Football Football

Bring on Gor Mahia, says Muhoroni Youth coach

Muhoroni Youth head coach James 'Odijo' Omondi in a past SPL match.PHOTO/Raymond Makhaya
Muhoroni Youth head coach James ‘Odijo’ Omondi in a past SPL match.PHOTO/Raymond Makhaya

NAIROBI, May 5- Since February 2012 when they beat Gor Mahia 1-0 on their Kenyan Premier League debut, Muhoroni Youth has never beaten the defending champions in seven consecutive attempts.

On that cold Wednesday night four years ago at the Nyayo National Stadium, Geoffrey Simiyu scored the lone goal in the 77th minute but that would be the last time Muhoroni would enjoy a dance after beating K’Ogalo.

Gor has won in all the years that followed, conceding only one goal while scoring 18.

But despite this history, Muhoroni Youth say they are not afraid of the record15-time champions who have just found their form back after a slow start to the season when they meet at the Moi Stadium in Kisumu on Saturday.

Head coach James Omondi referred by his peers as ‘Odijo’ says the dark history between them and Gor does not waiver his confidence heading into the fixture and has vowed to overturn the odds on his side and lead his charges to victory.

“We are a big team as well in our own right. They are in good form but we are in good form as well so it will be a balanced meeting. We respect Gor but we don’t fear them,” Omondi told Capital Sport after taking the team through their training paces on Friday.

Muhoroni are enjoying a good run this season,  having won twice and drawn two and it is on that platform that Omondi believes Muhoroni have what it takes to pick maximum points against the 2015 unbeaten champions.

“We want to maximize the advantage of the fact that we are in good form. Our target is to go into an attacking game and win. The odds might be against us but all the same, we believe in ourselves and of late our team work has been superb,” the tactician said.

Muhoroni Youth striker Wycliffe Ochomo in a past SPL match.PHOTO/Raymond Makhaya
Muhoroni Youth striker Wycliffe Ochomo in a past SPL match.PHOTO/Raymond Makhaya

The drive to drown the Jose Marcelo Ferreira’s team will anchor on striker Wycliffe Ochomo who has sunk nine goals in 11 league matches to lead the top scorers chart so far.

Most refer to him as the Mario Balloteli of Kenyan football due to his antics on and off the pitch, but he has ensured his football output is beyond reproach.

“I think he (Ochomo) has matured because he knows this is the best time for him to perform. He is working hard in training and enjoying his football. This is the right time for him and we are banking on him to score more goals,” Omondi stated.

Ochomo never made an impression when he turned out for Gor for six months in the 2013 season after being signed from Coastal side Congo United, but when he folds his sleeves to face Gor this time, he comes back a different man.

With four games remaining before the curtain comes down on the first leg, Omondi believes Ochomo will be a huge asset in his side’s ambition to finish on 26 points.

The sugar belt side is placed eighth on 17 points and will need to win three of the last four games to be assured of attaining their target.

“In the past, Muhoroni has been performing poorly in the first leg and that is what we want to change this time round. We are targeting 26 points and hopefully, we can push to achieve this,” Omondi added.

In other Saturday fixtures Chemelil host GOtv Shield champions Bandari, City Stars welcomes Ushuru, Sony Sugar travel to bottom side Sofapaka in Machakos.

On Sunday Mathare host Western Stima, Posta Rangers will be away to AFC Leopards while Thika faces Ulinzi Stars at the Thika Municipal Stadium.