AFC Leopards’ five-match winning run has left critics of coach Tomas Trucha eating their words while Gor Mahia and Shabana fans begin to worry over their respective ambitions
AFC Leopards are finally showing signs of life after putting together a string of five straight wins in the FKF Premier League.
Victor Omune’s first half header was enough to earn Ingwe a 1-0 win against Murang’a Seal on Sunday in what was a fifth straight match in which they have kept a clean sheet.
It is a run of form that few Ingwe fans had imagined of just under two months ago when their team won only two out of their 16 league matches.
21:00 - 11.02.2024
The Thomas Trucha steam train is cruising at full throttle.
Now, they are dreaming of a strong end to the season as their side have moved from the relegation places to eighth on the log with 30 points, four adrift of fourth-placed Tusker FC.
Leopards coach Tomas Trucha deserves plenty of credit for the turnaround which has come at a crucial time when he has added bite and steel to his team following the signing of experienced defender Kennedy Owino and Rwandan forward Arthur Gitego.
It means the Ingwe faithful can expect even a better performance from their team which is now not dropping points from winning positions like it was early in the season and also finding the back of the net regularly.
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Gor Mahia coach McKinstry supports striker Omala amid goal drought, highlighting his efforts and team's confidence despite a challenging period in the FKF Premier League.
A tough match away to bogey team Kakamega Homeboyz awaits this weekend but they can draw confidence from their 2-0 victory over Abana Abeingo in December which stopped a run of five straight wins for Patrick Odhiambo’s side.
While Leopards move up the table, bitter rivals Gor Mahia have dropped five points in their last two games which will concern some of their fans.
Gor Mahia had looked unbreakable until Kenya Police beat them 3-1 two weeks ago but a goalless draw with Ulinzi Stars on Saturday showed rivals can have some hope in the title race even if they enjoy a seven-point cushion over second-placed Nairobi City Stars.
K’Ogalo’s saving grace is that the chasing pack have not been consistent in the period they have dropped points but coach Johnathan McKinstry cannot afford to go three straight matches without maximum points.
His biggest job will be to get striker Benson Omala and his supporting cast firing since his forwards have been on a goal drought for some time now.
Omala is also still smarting from his failed move to Algeria, meaning his team-mates will need to up their game in a bid to regain the champions’ goalscoring touch.
17:00 - 11.02.2024
Tusker FC returned to winning ways in a big way when they thrashed hapless Shabana 4-0 to avenge their first leg defeat in October
Meanwhile, Shabana FC fans have every reason to be worried following Tore Bobe’s 4-0 thrashing at the hands of Tusker FC.
Tusker returned to winning ways in ruthless fashion in Homa Bay, exposing Shabana’s shortcomings, which shows the kind of task recently-appointed coach Sammy ‘Pamzo’ Omollo has on his hands.
Pamzo started with a 5-2 thrashing of Nzoia Sugar, followed by a morale-boosting goalless draw with City Stars, but the huge loss to Tusker undid the work he had started and he will have to go back to the drawing board.
The former Kenya Police tactician needs to get Shabana tight at the back where they can secure at least a point if things are not going well, something that will give them confidence going forward since a continuation of their struggles will see them relegated after waiting for 17 years to taste top flight football.