Wounded KCB hosts a depleted AFC Leopards after losing league opening match

Saturday, October 16th, 2021 00:00 |
David Kalama of Bidco United (L) vies for the ball against Benjamin Murimi of Bandari FC during their FKF-PL match at Thika Stadium on Friday. Photo/PD/RODGERS NDEGWA

Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) can be likened to an amorous man who storms someone’s matrimonial bed and makes up with his wife in the dead of night but whether that will play to the team’s advantage remains to be seen.

Today, KCB, who narrowly missed the 2020 Kenya Premier League (KPL) title by a whisker, meet cash-strapped AFC Leopards at Thika Stadium and in tow will be their newly acquired former Ingwe captain Robinson Kamura.

A week ago, Leopards stand-in captain Isaac Kipyegon did not hide the fact that that they rue losing their most valuable assets including Kamura, adding that it is now upon the majority of players who were sourced from the team’s junior ranks to prove their worth.

“All along, I have been urging them to play well and make me happy as their captain.

We started the league well by vanquishing Tusker 1-0 and we need not rest on our laurels since the league is a marathon,” said Kipyegon. 

Back to Kamura, the indefatigable defender who helped Leopards concede the fewest number of goals in the FKF 2020/21 season, is least expected to dish out any favours to his former employers who are under the tutelage of Belgian Patrick Aussiems.

For records, Aussiems who formerly coached Tanzanian giants Simba, expressed his pessimism about Leopards’ chances of winning the gong due to the embargo imposed by Fifa on the signing of players and it upon those who shall don Ingwe colours, including Kipyegon, prove him wrong 

“I won’t comment on what the team’s handlers are saying and would rather lead these young players.

We know what we want in the season and I believe actions will speak louder than words, “ Kipyegon who had a stint with Zoo Kericho said.

Posta Rangers FC players celebrate their second goal against Vihiga Bullets during their FKF-PL match at Thika Stadium on Friday. Photo/PD/ RODGERS NDEGWA

However, it is brutally honest to say that KCB are favourites despite losing their season-opening match against Gor.

With Tusker exempted from the fixtures due to their engagement in the Africa Champions League, the second focus on Saturday is the encounter between Mathare United and Ulinzi Stars in Kasarani from 3 pm.

Mathare escaped relegation by a whisker last season and it’s up on the team’s Head Coach Ezekiel Akwana has declared that there will not be in the league this season to make up numbers.

“We are reloaded and I think we have something up our sleeves to prove a point or two. We need to remain focused,” he said.

In Ruaraka, newcomers Kenya Police who starred the season with defeat by Kakamega Homeboyz will be seeking to make amends when they face Nairobi City Stars.

Meanwhile, Bandari went on top of the league table at least for 24 hours after a hard fought 3-2 win over hosts Bidco United at Thika Stadium on Friday as action resumed after a three week international break.

The Dockers scored their goals through Felly Mulumba in the 11th minute,William Wadri in the 43rd minute after a fine header and second half substitute Chacha Mwita added the third in the 71st minute following a goalmouth melee with Bidco United having their goals courtesy of Jacob Onyango and David Orem four minutes into full-time.-Charles Thuku and Barry Silah

In another duel, Nzoia Sugar frustrated Sofapaka to a goalless draw at Sudi stadium. David Kingatua was declared Man of the Match in the heavily contested duel.

Interestingly the former league champions had only two substitutions on the bench following a ban by FIFA after failing to clear some former players arrears.

Meanwhile Posta Rangers also laid down a marker following their 4-0 win over newcomers Vihiga Bullets.

Goals from former Gor Mahia marksman Eliud Lokuwam and Chridspinus Ochieng in the 31st minute in the 61st minute for a comfortable lead before Victor Ndinya and Caleb Olilo finished the job with strikes in the 79th and 80th minute.

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