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Oktay throws Gor off balance ahead of CL

Time to go? Gor Mahia head coach Hassan Oktay glances at his watch during his side’s Kenyan Premier League match against KCB at the Kenyatta Stadium in Machakos on May 2, 2019. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu

NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 6 – Just four days before their first round CAF Champions League tie away to Burundi’s Aigle Noir, Kenyan Premier League champions Gor Mahia have been thrown off balance with the resignation of head coach Hassan Oktay.

The club officially announced on Tuesday evening that the tactician had tendered his resignation to club chair Ambrose Rachier, just a day after the club supremo had hinted to Capital Sport they were looking at a plan B with the coach yet to return from England.

“Kindly accept my resignation as Gor Mahia FC head coach effective today, the sixth day of August 2019. As you are aware, the decision has been forced on me by the personal challenges I am facing here in Europe,” Oktay said in a letter addressed to rachier.

He added; “I wish to thank you and the entire club, including the fans for the opportunity you accorded me to manage this great club. I also wish you guys all the best in your forthcoming assignments.”

The tactician had asked for permission from the club to return to his home in England to sort out long standing personal issues, but seemingly they have taken more time to be solved.

Rachier on Monday evening told Capital Sport that he was aware of the issues and that he did not think Oktay was trying to engineer a move away from the club, barely six months after joining and leading them to the quarter finals of the Confederations Cup for the first time ever.

Gor Mahia head coach Hassan Oktay chats with his assistant Zedekiah Otieno during a training session at teh Uhuru Stadium in Dar es Salaam on January 22, 2018. Photo/Photo/TIMOTHY OLOBULU

With the tactician gone, Gor will now have to look for a quick replacement by Friday when they leave for Burundi as current assistant coach Patrick Odhiambo does not have the requisite paperwork to handle the team for a CAF match.

New rules stipulate that a coach handling a team at a continental match has to have a CAF A coaching license or its equivalent.

Gor have lost their coach just after losing two of their best players from last season, Jacques Tuyisenge and Francis Kahata. Oktay’s assistant from last season Zedekiah Otieno also left to join KCB as head coach.

Save for two foreign based players hitherto unknown, Gor have only signed youngsters.

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