Gor Mahia plot for elusive continental away victory

Gor Mahia plot for elusive continental away victory
12 February 2019 08:04

While they have enjoyed good form playing in their home games, Kenyan champions Gor Mahia have struggled to replicate the same feat travelling away from home, and that is an aspect of their continental campaign head coach Hassan Oktay hopes to change.

Gor travel to Luanda, Angola on Wednesday for their Group D Day Two clash against hosts Petro Atletico, and Oktay is optimistic they can exorcise the demons of failing to win their away games.

Since their return to continental football in 2009, K’Ogalo’s only victory away from home was last season’s 3-2 conquest over Tanzania’s Yanga at the group stage of the same competition in Dar es Salaam.

“We have to get our away record to match the form we have at home. I believe if we can do that then we will improve as a team and attain our targets,” the tactician stated.

The Kenyans kicked off their group stage campaign with a commanding and morale boosting 4-2 win over Egyptian giants Zamalek last week and the tactician hopes they can build on that victory and pick a huge result away from home.

Sequel to that, Gor travel to Luanda with an improved form on the domestic front, having picked up identical 2-0 wins over Sony Sugar and arch rivals AFC Leopards in recent games.

“The motivation is really improving and the players are now beginning to understand my philosophy. Game by game, we are improving and getting better,” said the tactician who took over from British Dylan Kerr last December.

He expects a tough duel against Petro who started their campaign with a 2-1 loss away to NA Hussein Dey in Algeria.

“I watched their first game (against NA Hussein Dey) and they are fast, mobile and are a very well organized team. It will be a very tough game but I am ready for them and I am not worried,” the tactician stated.

He added; “They might have lost 2-1 but they conceded two easy goals from set pieces and they didn’t play bad. I have also watched one other game and I think they are a formidable opponent.”

As they travel to Angola, Gor will be without influential strikers Jacques Tuyisenge and right back Philemon Otieno who are both suspended for the tie after picking up successive yellow cards.

It will be a huge blow for the Kenyan side especially with Tuyisenge having put in a man of the match performance against Zamalek, playing part in all the four goals by scoring two and assisting the others. Nonetheless, Oktay is not worried by the absence of the two and believes the squad has enough depth.
They will welcome back legendary striker Dennis Oliech, defender Wellington Ochieng and midfielder Lawrence Juma who all missed the derby with injury and illness but have recovered in time to make the Angola trip.

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