NAIROBI, Kenya- Gor Mahia FC interim Head Coach Zedekiah ‘Zico’ Otieno says his first defeat in charge of the club will not determine the rest of the season.
Goals either side of the half from Ezekiel Okare and Timothy Luda nailed the local giants on the cross as they began life without immediate former boss Jose Marcelo ‘Ze Maria’ Ferreira on a sour note at the Kinoru Stadium in Meru.
Defeat was more painful for the Green Army as it coincided with the former Inter Milan defender being unveiled as Head Coach for relegated Albanian Premier League side KF Tirana.
“It is unfortunate to start on a losing note. This is not the kind of result we anticipated. Sadly that is what we have,” said the former Harambee Stars coach.
Ten-man Gor’s third defeat of the season pushed the record 15-champions down to second on the log after champion Tusker FC leapt above them to the summit after sharing the spoils with Kariobangi Sharks FC.
“The red card we got changed the dynamics of the match completely but we have 20 matches remaining to fight for the title,” Otieno said.
Even with Sunday defeat cutting the gap between them and Batoto Ba Mungu to four points, Zico maintained the destiny of the 2017 Sportpesa Premier League (SPL) is in their hands.
Sofapaka boss, Sam Ssimbwa who saw his side rise to fifth, five points from leaders Tusker is looking forward to a storming run in the second leg as they threw their hat into the title chase.
“That was a great game and we were dominant from start to finish. I’m proud of my new boys, who greatly improved the quality of the team and I think we are going to have a great second leg,” the Ugandan remarked.
The 2009 SPL champions recruited heavily in the June window with the cash once again flowing through their coffers after a few lean years.
Tusker lead the standings on 28 with Gor (27), Ulinzi Stars FC (25), Posta Rangers FC (25) and Sofapaka (23) rounding the top-five after 14 rounds of play.