Tusker vs Gor Mahia: Mapping out where the match can be won or lost

FKFPL Tusker vs Gor Mahia: Mapping out where the match can be won or lost

Kiplagat Sang 07:45 - 28.05.2023

Pulse Sports takes a look at the showdown, and picks out strategic zones that will be key for both sides.

Football Kenya Federation match action returns over the weekend, and Tusker and Gor Mahia meet in a crucial one.

Tusker go into the game buoyed by their FKF Cup progress, while K’Ogalo are a wounded giant after losing the Mashemeji Derby to AFC Leopards.

As they prepare their charges, coach Johnathan McKinstry of Gor Mahia and his Tusker counterpart, Robert Matano, are set to come up with winning strategies.

But what are the key areas where a win or a loss can easily be registered?

The gloves

Both coaches look to have found their regular starting goalkeepers. Gad Mathews, barring any injury or suspension, is always an automatic starter for Gor Mahia, while Brian Bwire is Matano’s number one choice.

Both goalkeepers will carry out critical duties by trying to deny the opponent goals.

Anyone who concedes and gets defeated in the process will see his side concede more ground in the race, an unwanted result that both sides want to avoid.

Tusker’s probability of keeping a clean sheet is high, as they have managed to do so in nine of the last 10 games.

K’Ogalo, on the other hand, have managed five clean sheets in the same number of games.

Aerial prowess

This is a key battle field, and anyone who dominates the zone will surely have an added advantage.

Charles Momanyi and Humphey Mieno are good players for Tusker when it comes to aerial duels, and the two are set to give K’Ogalo a nightmare.

Gor Mahia do not have an established player who has shown the capability of dominating the aerial duel.

Therefore, they must ensure they keep the ball on the ground and deny Tusker a chance of launching aerial attacks, especially from set-pieces.

The midfield battle

Mieno is set to start for the Brewers, and his presence will bring calm, solidity, and experience key aspects that will be needed in the game.

Ernest Wendo has been a key deep-lying midfielder for McKinstry, but sometimes he is a reckless tackler. He will need to be calm in order not to attract yellow cards or worse, a red card.

In the attacking midfield department, Gor Mahia boasts Austin Odhiambo, who has been critical in opening up spaces when facing stubborn defense lines.

Boniface Omondi has also been a key player in that respect, and the two are the arsenal that the record champions will look up to, to deliver.

The attacking precision

Benson Omala gives Gor Mahia a dependable goal scorer, while Tusker have not had an established scorer this season.

The Tuskers' goals have come from unlikely sources; the wingers and the midfielders, with January signing Mike Oduor scoring vital goals recently.

But with Omala an established goal poacher, that might come with a disadvantage; Tusker already know where the danger is and will work to stop it from the word go.

On the other hand, Tusker depends on multiple sources for goals, and that can easily put Gor Mahia’s plans to deal with those threats in total disarray.