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Kerr readies for ‘massive six weeks’ at Gor

Gor Mahia head coach Dylan Kerr reacts during a training session at the Camp Toyoyo Ground in Jericho on April 5, 2018. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 29- Gor Mahia head coach Dylan Kerr believes the next six weeks will be massively important in shaping up how they end the season, calling on players to brace themselves for a bumpy ride.

Just after their 1-0 victory over Sony Sugar in Kisumu on Friday evening to extend their lead on top of the Kenyan premier League standings, Gor Mahia flew directly to Nairobi from where they will depart to Tanzania for the two-week CECAFA Kagame Cup.

When they return, back to back home games against Yanga in the CAF Confederation Cup await them before they face Rayon Sport at home and fly to North Africa to take on USM Alger in Algeria.

On top of that, the club will travel to Liverpool, United Kingdom where they are scheduled to play a friendly match against English Premier League side Everton. This will come at a cost as they will have to squeeze into midweek catch up ties in the league.

Also, the record 16-time Kenyan Premier League champions are in the round of 16 for the Football Kenya Federation Cup where they have been pooled against Posta Rangers.

“It’s a massive task that we set ourselves into and we need to ensure we are up to the challenge. The next six weeks are going to be big for us and we need to be at our best. It has been tough already because we have played three matches within a week and it is taking a toll on us,” the tactician said.

Gor Mahia head coach Dylan Kerr issues instruction to skipper Harun Shakava during the Sportpesa Super Cup at the Afraha Stadium in Nakuru in June 2018. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu

He added; “We need to find the right balance, use the players we have very wisely and give a shot at every challenge we have.”

Kerr has expressed desire to battle for both the league and cup double but the biggest on their minds is progressing to the Group Stages of the Confederation Cup. This, he knows will come at a cost.

“We will get beaten at some point so the matter of going unbeaten is not really on our minds. The most important thing is that we get to achieve our targets,” he noted.

The tactician has been rotating his squad throughout the season, using his best 11 sparingly and handing the rookies more playing time in the league and cup assignments.

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On Thursday against Sony Sugar, Boniface Oluoch, Harun Shakava and Humphrey Mieno were all rested. It is expected that he will also rotate the squad during the Kagame Cup in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

Gor Mahia midfielder Ernest Wendo in action against Sony Sugar during a Kenyan Premier League match at the Moi Stadium in Kisumu on June 29, 2018. PHOTO/Courtesy

Jacques Tuyisenge struck the lone goal against the Sugar millers to send the club 15 points clear on top of the standings with the pending derby against arch rivals AFC Leopards meaning they have played a match less.

Meanwhile, the club has completed the signing of striker Francis Mustafa who arrives from Rwanda top tier side Kiyovu Sports, with the Burundian international set to replace Meddie Kagere who left to join Simba SC in Tanzania.

“Gor Mahia is a big club with good players and l am happy to be part of the club. It’s a great opportunity for me to better what l did in Rwanda. I will work hard to help the team to achieve the best,” Mustafa told the official Gor Mahia website after penning his contract in Nairobi.

Mustafa’s signing is the only transfer business K’Ogalo will transact with the transfer window set to be close on July 2.

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