NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 19 – Gor Mahia head coach Dylan Kerr wants his players to focus on building their own history in continental football even as he urges them to borrow the inspiration from the 1987 Nelson Mandela Cup winning squad.
Gor Mahia play Rwanda’s Rayon Sport in a crucial CAF Confederations Cup Group D tie at the Moi Sports Centre Kasarani on Sunday night, and a win will earn them a ticket to the quarter finals of the Confederations Cup for the first time in their history.
“It is good, the club prides itself with the 1987 squad that won the Mandela Cup. That is good. But, what I tell these players every day, make history for yourselves. Let everyone now talk about the 2018 squad and not the 1987 one,” Kerr said speaking to Capital FM’s Saturday Music and Sports show.
He added; “We have a chance, we have a good squad to do it and I believe we can make history for this club. We want to take Kenyan football to the African map and I only hope these players see themselves the way I see them. They are brilliant.”
Gor Mahia lead Group D with eight points, only sitting ahead of second placed USM Alger on goal difference. A win against Rayon on Sunday will book them a ticket to the quarters and if USM drop points in Tanzania, K’Ogalo will only need a point in their final group match to top.
“The most important thing for us is Sunday and ensure qualification. Matters of topping the group can come later but once we have the three points and through, that is what matters to us,” the coach added.
he also noted; “I am confident we are going to the Quarter finals and if we do go on and win, we will be at the final. I can assure you.”
Kerr says he is hugely impressed with how his side has prepared for the game on Sunday, saying he likes their spirit and desire and hopes they can replicate that on match day.
“I watched them in training and honestly I was hugely impressed. The desire, the passion, the work rate… I just stood out there and I was looking at them like.. wow! I just want to translate that on the pitch. We are playing on a good surface so we should be able to get things going,” the coach added.
He will miss the services of goalkeeper Boniface Oluoch who has failed to recover in time after injuring his shoulder while striker Ephraim Guikan is also ruled out after picking an injury following a collision with the Chemelil Sugar goalkeeper during their league clash last Thursday.
Jacques Tuyisenge is also not at 100 pc fitness and might be limited in his playing time, but Kerr says he knows he will have a strong squad.
The tactician also has a challenge at left back with Godfrey Walusimbi out working on a move to Soith Africa’s Kaizer Chiefs.
Philemon Otieno who has been the team’s patch up star might make an appearance at left back having played there against Bandari and Posta Rangers. Karim Nizigiyimana might earn his first CAF start at right back.
The two sides drew 1-1 in the first leg at a rain-soaked Nyamirambo Stadium in Kigali.