Kenya vs Comoros: Emerging Stars out to put one foot in the semi-final at COSAFA Cup

Kenya vs Comoros: Emerging Stars out to put one foot in the semi-final at COSAFA Cup

Joel Omotto 07:35 - 30.06.2024

Kenya will be out for a second straight victory at the COSAFA Cup when they clash with Comoros with a place in the semi-final firmly in their sights.

Kenya’s Emerging Stars will seek to inch a step closer to the semi-final of the COSAFA Cup when they take on Comoros at the Isaac Wolfson Stadium in Port Elizabeth, South Africa on Sunday.

Ken Odhiambo’s men started their campaign with a 2-0 victory against defending champions Zambia and can put one foot in the semi-final with a win against the island nation.

Kenya were good value for their money as they took the lead when Austin Odhiambo kept his cool from the penalty spot to slot the ball home after eight minutes.

One became two soon afterwards as hesitant defenders at the back post allowed Patrick Otieno to steal in and score as he poked the ball past Zambia goalkeeper Charles Kalumba.

The second half saw Zambia dominate possession, but they were not able to create enough in front of goal to claw their way back into the game.

Victory left Kenya on top in Group B with three points, same as Zimbabwe, who beat Comoros 1-0 in their opening match.

Only the top team in each of the three pools and the best placed runner-up advance to the semifinals this year, meaning it is all to play for and any slip-ups will put teams on the back foot.

Kenya must therefore secure maximum points against Comoros to have a strong case heading into their final group game against Zimbabwe.

It is still tight in the group as Zambia can turn the tables if they beat Zimbabwe also on Sunday and Kenya fail to secure maximum points.

Odhiambo revealed that the strategy against Zambia was to be aggressive and score early goals so that they control the tempo of the game in the second half and executed their plan to perfection.

"When we arrived, we recognised they were a strong side. Our goal was to deny them by not allowing them to pass in the passing lanes and to make sure they couldn't bring in those crosses because they were trying to spread us wide," he noted.

More of that will be expected from his boys against Comoros who can spring a surprise if Kenya underrate them.

Odhiambo played with a 3-5-2 formation which brought the best out of his team while also showing the true qualities of players like Posta Rangers forward Patrick Otieno who won the penalty before scoring the second goal.

It remains to be seen if the tactical plan will be unchanged against Comoros who are likely to sit back and allow Kenya possession while seeking to hit them on the counter-attack.