NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 24- AFC Leopards players were chased down into the dressing room by irritated fans after the team suffered a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Western Stima at the Nyayo National Stadium.
The win saw Western Stima complete a triple over Ingwe after they had beaten Leopards 2-1 in the first leg of the league and 3-0 in the GOtv Shield, and the result on Saturday in Nairobi cements the complete dominance Henry Omino has had over the 13-time Kenyan Premier League champions this season.
Kemboi slotted home after Leopards keeper Lucas Indeche had spilled a cross on his path, giving Stima a much needed goal that would prove important especially looking at their outside chance of challenging for this season’s title.
The win takes Omino’s men to third on the log with 40 points, eight off leaders Tusker and Omino has warned that if the top sides continue dropping points, his side will pounce.
On the other hand, the loss complicated Leopards chances of breaking into the top eight as they dropped to 12th on 29 points.
The players had to quickly duck into the dressing room to avoid the wrath of the fans, some of whom had carried whips with the intention of flogging down the players.
“These players have brought shame on us. They don’t know what it means to play for this club. We are tired and we can’t take it any ore. They should all go!” one of the fans said in anger.
Interim coach Ezekiel Akwana could not also hide his disappointment after the result saying; “The players never played according to instructions. How we planned in training and what they did today was a complete opposite. I am disappointed but we will fight for the remaining games and see what comes of it.”
On his part, Western Stima head coach Henry Omino hailed his charges, saying, “It has been through hard work and determination. I am very pleased with this victory because it was hard earned. We knew it was not going to be easy.”
Stima had started more comfortably and under less pressure and they won the midfield battle with Fredrick Shimonyo and Kenneth Muguna Mugambi dictating the pace of the game.
Youngster Charles Bruno tested Stima keeper Gabriel Andika in the 25th minute with a shot from distance which the keeper handled with ease.
Seeing his side had been clearly outwitted in midfield, Akwana pulled out Mousa Sissoko for Bernard Mang’oli.
Leopards managed to stabilize and Stima left back Wesley Onguso was forced to clear from the goal-line in the 43rd minute after Andika had spilled Juma’s cross with Aswani heading the ball goal wards.
In the second half, the under-fire Leopards were determined to overturn the scoreline and they pumped in more balls into the Stima goal area.
Yussuf Suf was introduced for Bruno, an attacking change that sought to pump in more firepower upfront.
However, none of the concerted efforts bore fruit as Stima defended to guard the single goal lead.