NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 9- Kenyan Premier League top scorer Masoud Juma has disclosed that his current performance in the top flight has been driven by critics who he says have helped push him to work harder.
The Kariobangi Sharks forward was at the centre of the national team storm in June when he made his debut for the Harambee Stars in the 2019 African Cup of Nations Qualifier away to Sierra Leone which Kenya lost 2-1.
His selection and performance in that match elicited harsh reactions from football stakeholders especially noting that he was preferred ahead of then Kenyan Premier League top scorer Stephen Waruru.
However, the former Bandari and Sony Sugar forward has worked his way at club level, hitting the apex of the top scorers’ chart after scoring four goals in last weekend’s 7-0 rout of Muhoroni Youth to take his tally to 15.
“It is a great feeling to get to the top and I must thank my team-mates who have always supported me and the few fans who stood behind my back when I was being criticized. That period and those words never wore me down but they encouraged me to work harder,” Juma told Capital Sport.
“I wanted to show everyone that this is a God-given talent and so far the hard work has paid off and I have proved my worth,” he added.
The striker has scored 15 league goals for Sharks so far while in all competitions he has managed 22, six having come off the GOtv Shield where Sharks were losing finalists and one for the Harambee Stars during a friendly match in Morocco.
The forward notes that his target this season was to get to 25 goals and with three matches remaining before the season ends, he is confident he will achieve the target. Sharks face Nzoia Sugar and Nakumatt in their final two games of the season.
At the same time, Juma hopes he can translate his goal scoring prowess from club to country and he believes with a matter of time, he will prove his worth there as well.
“These are two different levels but I want to keep working hard and I believe it is just a matter of time before good things happen. If given more chances, soon, I will prove myself,” he noted.
Meanwhile, The Gor Mahia duo of Meddie Kagere as well as Jacques Tuyisenge and Nakumatt’s Kepha Aswani will be putting up a fight to try and beat Juma to the Golden Boot with the trio sitting joint second with 12 goals each.
Mathare United’s Chris Oduor who has also been firing well for Mathare can increase his tally of 10 with the Slum Boys set to face relegated Muhoroni Youth in one of their two final games of the season. Ulinzi Stars’ Stephen Waruru is on 11 but hasn’t been performing well.