Monday, March 21, 2011

Post Match: Karuturi (H)

Leopards won 1-0 with Itubu Imbem scoring the winner.

Supersport has a report from Collins Okinyo

Imbem fires Leopards win at Karuturi

Congolese import Itubu Imbem made immediate impact on his comeback for AFC Leopards after a long injury layoff when he scored the solitary goal that ensured Leopards beat visiting Karuturi sports 1-0 at the Mumias complex.

Itubu received a sublime pass from l Emmanuel Tostao from deep in the midfield before making a beautiful run beating two defenders before unleashing an unstoppable drive that left Karuturi keeper Noah Ayuko hapless in goal to make the scores 1-0 in the 26th minute of the game.

However Leopards were spared their blushes in the 44th minute,when Karuturi's David Owino thumping header was saved off the line by Leopards defender Ediga Waudo with keeper Barnabas Tiema beaten to the ball.

Karuturi came back strongly in the second half pressing hard on Leopards defence but they could not level the scores with Jacob Omondi and Allan Otindo tightly marked .In the 62nd minute referee Damaris Kimani courted controversy as he gave Karuturi's Edward Mbwambi a straight red card on a dangerous foul on Emmanuel Tostao only to later rescind the decision and Issue Mbwabi with a yellow card withdrawing the red card in a match watched by hundreds of Leopards travelling fans.
In the post match interviews Karuturi coach James Nandwa told "my finishing let me down but i am going to make amends"

Robert Matano on the other hand was elated "the boys have maintained the tempo and this was a good perfomance from them"

KPL has this report

AFC Leopards 1 Karuturi Sport 0

Itubu Imbem scored the solitary goal in the match Leopards took to the home of their sponsors, Mumias Sugar Company.

Former national under-17 team player, Emmanuel Tostao set Imbem in the 26th minute for the Congolese import to mark his return to the team from injury. Imbem possessed and rode from just after the midfield, taking on defenders before firing past Noah Ayuko in the Karuturi goal.

IngweFans has this report

An invigorated AFC Leopards side put on a spirited fight on Sunday to humble visiting Sher Karuturi by a solitary goal in a pulsating Kenya Premier League (KPL) match staged at Mumias Complex in Mumias. Buoyed by an ecstatic crowd a section of them having traveled all the way from Nairobi, Leopards opened fireworks and made their intentions of carrying the day clearly spelt out in the initial minutes of the encounter.

Points man Emmanuel Tostao was the first to break the ice for the match with a long range in the fifth minute but his challenge was well taken care of by former Kenya international in Karuturi goal Noah  Ayuko. The blue shirts piled incessant pressure on the visitors keenly capitalizing on the uproar of initial moments from their psyched up fans and when an opportunity knocked their door in the 27th minute Congolese import Itubu Imbem converted a low range following Karuturi’s defensive profligacy.

The win was crucial for Leopards who lost to Karuturi by one goal last season at the same venue when Football Kenya Limited (FKL) had banned Nyayo and City Stadiums. Leopards had also not scored a goal against Karuturi sports in their last four metings.

David Owino could have leveled for Karuturi in the 37th minute but his header from a corner kick was parried away by Leopards custodian Barnabus Tiema.

Leopards' Defenders John Amboko, Edigar Waudo and captain Nicholas Muyoti built what one would liken to a wall that proved unbeatable for the opponents.

Match centre referee Damaris Kimani was on spotlight in the second half of the clash when she showed a red card to Karuturi’s Andrew Mbwabi for a clumsy tackle on a Leopards player but moments later nullified her action and instead yellow carded Leopard's skipper Nicholas Muyoti for his complaints.

Her action sparked fury among Leopards officials and fans who argued that he should have been sent out; however their cries did not yield much.

Coach Robert Matano praised his side for a polished display and promised to continue the streak. “I am pleased to win today, my boys played with determination and I hope that we will continue winning in upcoming matches” he said.

MichezoAfrika has this report
Am back! That is the message AFC Leopards’ Congolese striker Itubu Imbem sent to his fans when he fired home the winning goal against Karuturi sports in their fourth KPL match played at the Mumias Sports complex on Sunday afternoon.

Speaking to, Itubu thanked the fans in Mumias for turning out in large numbers and has promised more goals warning that AFC Leopards will stop at nothing but the title.

“The fans today were amazing. This was one of my best matches so far and it is good I came back with a goal and a win. I pray that God keeps me well and fit so I can continue with my good scoring form this season.” He said.

Imbem has been out of action since the beginning of the season owing to a jaw injury. In his first match, he collected a pass deep in the midfield from youthful Emmanuel Tostao, dribbled past two defenders and fired home from the edge of the eighteen yard box beyond a hapless Ayuko Noah in goal.

AFC Leopards cracked and almost gave away the lead at the stroke of half time in the 44th minute but they survived the scare with a goal line clearance following a David Owino’s header from a corner kick.

Referee Damaris Kimani from Nairobi raised eyebrows over some of her decisions with the conspicuous one being in the 65th minute when he red carded a Karuturi defender Edward Mbwabi for a dangerous foul on Tostao but later cancelled the same to a yellow card.

“This was a funny decision that puts her credentials to question. How can you red card a player for dangerous play then allow him back in play? Strange, I have never seen this in soccer.” Complained AFC Leopards’ team manager Bernad Onyango.

In another close attack by AFC Leopards, a Hugo Nzoka’s powerful header from a corner kick in the 72nd minute was saved by former Kenyan international Noah Ayuko right on the goal line with the fans already celebrating the second goal.

The win is the third consecutive victory for AFC Leopards under coach Matano and their next assignment against Western Stima in two weeks will be another cracker and acid test for the ever improving side.

“Our next assignment is a tough test for us in Bukhungu but we believe we have enough fans to push us to victory. Our injured players will be back to playing form and am not afraid, we shall prevail over the hot Stima boys.” Added team manager Bernard Onyango.

After the match AFC Leopards’ sponsors Mumias Sugar through their corporate affairs manager Pamela Lutta rewarded the players with 5 kilogrammes of sugar each as a gift from the company.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Pre Match: Karuturi (H)

The Leopards will be playing away... well... they will actually be playing home away from home, when they take on Karuturi Sports on Sunday 20th March. Leopards have moved the match from the usual home ground of Nairobi to Mumias in keeping in line with the shirt sponsor, Mumias Sugar, request that they play some home matches at the Mumias Sports Complex, which has reputedly, one of the smoothest surfaces in the country. Leopards also trained at the Mumias Complex during the pre-season so they really should be at home during this match.


First, Carol Radul goes for a Leopards win. Some Facebok Branch fans of Leopards immediately cried that this was a bad omen, as Carol has always been known to get results wrong, especially when it comes to her beloved Arsenal of England.

So 2-1 it is in favour of the Leopards.

Supersport also has a prediction by Collins Okinyo and what do you know? It also goes for a 2-1 Leopards win.

AFC Leopards Vs Karuturi (Mumias Complex)

The match has been switched to the Mumias Sugar complex in Western Kenya because of Leopards’ sponsors Mumias Sugar. AFC Leopards are placed in the fifth place with six points in the log table while their challengers Karuturi Sports are in tenth with four points from three games.

Leopards seem to have found their form with the change of guard that has seen Robert Matano take over from Belgian Robert Bollen. Karuturi emerged victorious over Leopards in he same venue last season so they will go into the match expecting another surprise victory over a resurgent Leopards team.

Our Prediction:2-1

The Saturday Nation has a short preview by Odindo Ayieko.

At the Mumias Complex, AFC Leopards, fresh from silencing Ulinzi Stars last weekend host Karuturi Sports hoping to continue their winning form.

Coach Matano is however worried about the fitness of midfield kingpin Nick Muoyo who looked troubled by his knee against Ulinzi while last weekend’s scorer Evans Wandera is serving a one match suspension.

But Hugo Nangu and Dimonde Selenge are fit to start while Martin Imbalabala may be recalled to help the defence.

Nick Muoyo?

MichezoAfrika has a preview of the match and also informs of the return of Itubu Imbem of Leopards. The story is penned by Dennis Machio

AFC Leopards team left Nairobi early Friday morning for Mumias where they will be playing their next home match against Karututri sports on Sunday afternoon in their fourth KPL fixture. This will be the first match AFC Leopards is playing at the sponsor’s backyard this season and a win for the team that has so far found a winning rhythm is all the western fans are waiting for.

Among the traveling group is Congolese International Itubu Imbem who will be making his first appearance this season following a pre season injury he sustained while on a western tour with his club AFC Leopards early this year.

Imbem has been out of action for his club for close to two months now following a jaw injury but he is now energetic and roaring for his first appearance this season.

“Am ready for the match. Sitting out on the terraces is not fun at all and am happy to be back in the squad finally. It is a good thing my team has started the season on a high note winning two matches and I will work even harder to earn us more goals and points hopefully starting this weekend.” He said.

AFC Leopards’ lead striker Itubu Imbem and Demonde Selenga - both foreign players- have been tipped to be having one of the best striking combinations in KPL and a good run in their partnership this weekend could overturn last season’s result at the same Mumias Sports Complex venue when AFC went down to Karuturi sports.

AFC Leopards Team manager Bernard Onyango has also expressed elation of his team playing at his former home ground in his capacity as team manager.Onyango famously known as Imbogo turned out for Mumias Sugar FC before its disbandment and has asked his boys AFC Leopards to reward him with victory in his return back to his grounds.

“This was my home for many years. I know each and every corner of the stadium and am confident we shall impress our fans that have been left hungry for ages after our withdrawal from the league.” He said.

Other members of the Mumias Sugar team at that time were Nick Yakhama (Currently head coach of Chemelil Sugar and former AFC Leopards coach), Patrick Mugata who is the stadium manager at the sports complex amongst others. 

The Standard has a short preview too.

Elsewhere, AFC Leopards face Karuturi Sports at Mumias Complex without the services of four key players. Striker Brian Masiolo has been ruled out of the contest with a knee injury same as defender Martin Imbalambala, while diminutive midfielder Salim Kinje is out with a torn muscle and Augustine Etemesi is still nursing a cracked right toe.


Saturday, March 12, 2011

Post Match: Ulinzi Stars (A)

A second half goal from substitute Evans Wandera was enough to give Leopards the maximum ponts against Champions Ulinzi Stars at the Afraha Stadium in Nakuru. Wandera later got marching orders in the game.

View video highlights here

MichezoAfrika, which is emerging as one of the best sources for local sports news, was first off the blocks in their reporting of the events at Afraha Stadium. In a report filed by John Munene, the website wrote:-

Ten man AFC Leopards silence champions Ulinzi

The Kenyan Premier entered its third week with AFC Leopards beating hosts and KPL defending champions Ulinzi FC by a solitary goal in an entertaining match played at Afraha stadium, Nakuru on Saturday. The second successive win for AFC meant the champions have had a bad start after only securing a point from their last three matches.

Ulinzi started the match the better team with Nderitu and Stephen Waruru exchanging neat passes but Ingwe’s defense stood firm with keeper Tiema making fine saves to keep the score sheet clean.

On the 20 minutes mark, Ulinzi had a great surge upfront that provided Stephen Waruru with a great opportunity to score but his first shot was saved by keeper Tiema while his second attempt went begging.

AFC Leopard’s head coach Robert Matano was forced to bring in Bernard Mang’oli after Salim Kinje was injured with 8 minutes to the break. Ulinzi were clearly superior in striking during the first half and had the best goal attempts but they lived to rue the missed chances. AFC’s only attempt was through Hugo Nzoka but the latter was ruled for offside in the last minute of the first half.

After the second half break, Evans Wandera came in for injured Augustine Etemesi.Ulinzi picked up again and with five minutes gone ,Waruru’s well executed back heel found unmarked Mike Baraza who did little to save the day for the misfiring soldiers when he sent it wide.

Ingwe then slowly crept into the game with their domination of the midfield well rewarded with a goal ten minutes after the break courtesy of a quick build up on the 55th minute. Ulinzi keeper Francis Ochieng miscalculated the movement of the ball and missed, Hugo Nzoka collected it from the wide far post and sent back a cross to unmarked Wandera who had an easy tap in to send the partisan traveling crowd into wild jubilation.

With a quarter of an hour to the end, Ulinzi’s Mike Baraza again missed a glorious opportunity to equalize after he sent his close range shot wide with Tiema well beaten for the first time.

The scorer Evans Wandera would have turned from a hero to a villain had AFC conceded a late goal after he earned a second yellow and was sent off to the dressing room thus giving the soldiers a one man advantage with 10 minutes to go.

AFC keeper Bernard Tiema pulled a man of the match performance after he saved several goal bound shots from Ulinzi who capitalized on the numbers advantage to search for the elusive equalizer.

Ulinzi’s Stephen Waruru had a great game with several of his crosses causing trouble to the AFC defense but his final touches in front of  goal let him down.

Captain Stephen Ocholla was also a major culprit after he wasted two clear chances by failing to direct his powerful headers into the goal posts.

The second win in a row catapults AFC Leopards into the top of the KPL table and leaves the most popular club hard die fans with great expectations for this season which has just began.

The clash was televised live on SuperSport 9 and KBC with the pathetic state of the pitch clearly apparent.

Ulinzi:Francis Ochieng,J.Mulinge,Collins Kisuya,Josiah Odhiambo (Alan Muhati), G.Kokoyo,Stephen Ocholla,A. Nderitu,G.Oyoo,Mike Baraza,Stephen Waruru,Chester Okoyo(Collins Ochieng)

AFC Leopards: Tiema,Waudo,D.Okumu,Amboko,Muyoti,A. Koki,Selenga,s.Kinje (Bernard Mangoli),Hugo Nzoka(Gideon Israel),A. Etemesi(Evans Wandera),J.Okumu

Pre Match: Ulinzi

Leopards face defending champions Ulinzi Stars away at Afraha Stadium in Nakutu this afternoon in a third consecutive Leopards match to be beamed live on Supersport.

First let us start with the negatives. Carol Radul still predicts a third Leopards loss in a row.

The other negative is the report by Secretary General that some goons may have been hired to disrupt the match. The report is carried on MichezoAfrika and states:-

Newly elected AFC Leopards Secretary General Josephat Bukachi has called on fans to be extra vigilant during the Kenyan Premier League match pitting hosts Ulinzi FC and AFC Leopards game at Nakuru on Saturday afternoon. This is after the newly elected team got wind of what he claimed was a plot to disrupt the match by former ousted AFC Leopards officials.

According to Bukachi, several of the hired goons confided to them on how they had been paid and Nissans hired to ferry them to cause chaos during the match. Not willing to take any chance, Bukachi told that they had liaised with the host team and asked them to put in place adequate security measures to ensure all fans are safe.

“According to the some of the goons, three Nissans have been hired and will be used in ferrying them to the match venue with the intention of causing chaos. Of course this is disturbing news and we would take the earliest opportunity to categorically condemn such acts. We stand for peace and would like to urge the fans turning out to maintain the same and assure them that the host team has put in elaborate security measures to ensure they are safe. Anyone with the intention of causing chaos will be dealt with accordingly as per the laws.” said Bukachi.

A contingent of confirmed four hundred AFC leopards fans have already bought tickets and will be travelling from Nairobi for the encounter.After beating Posta Rangers 3-1 last week,Ingwe will be out to prove that was no fluke when they face the defending champions.

Only last week, former chairman Julius Ochiel and his secretary general Robert Asembo were met with hostile reception at the City Stadium during the AFC Leopards’ vs. Rangers Match. The two officials had to run for their dear lives under heavy missiles from the infuriated fans that descended on them with slaps, kicks, blows and all manners of nasty insults.

Hopefully, it is a false alarm. Now to the positives! There is a buzz in the press with most newspapers reporting about the game.

Winless Ulinzi Stars welcome rising AFC Leopards at Nakuru’s Afraha Stadium in the match of the day on Saturday. The tie offers an attractive phase-off between a struggling champion and a resurging wannabe champ intent on sending a message, and has been made more alluring by uncertainties of both benches.

First Ulinzi. After reports this week emerged that their league winning coach Benjamin Nyangweso had been sacked over a poor run by the military side, the club’s secretary Joe Birgen denied the development and in fact offered that the coach was going to South Africa for a three-month training course.
But it is now emerging that the Ulinzi football management met last and decided to sack Nyangweso and elevate his assistant Sammy Simiyu to the top position on the bench.
Nyangweso, the 2010 KPL coach of the year, did not want to get into the details of his rather unceremonious exit only saying: “I do not know what is going on. I have not been told anything but I am not with the team now. The truth will come out.”
Ulinzi, for whatever reason, have not officially announced anything. Perhaps, like the soldiers they are, they do not want to show they have panicked. But clearly Simiyu is now the man in charge, barely weeks into the season.

Over at AFC Leopards, their official head coach Robert Bollon has gone absent without official leave. The coach was reported in some internet sites to have complained over interference in his job.
The team’s technical director, Robert Matano, dismissed such talk attributed to the Belgian saying the coach should listen to advice from the rest of his team since he did not know the players well. “We do not know where he (Bollon) is. For now I and Eliud Omukuyia are handling the team,” Matano said. Matano, a league winning coach with Sofapaka in 2009, said he will not change the side that so emphatically beat Rangers 3-1 at Nyayo Stadium last week.

Ulinzi won both fixtures last season but in their current vulnerable state, Leopards will fancy their chances. The starting line-up should have team captain Nicholas Muyoti, Liberian Abraham Cokie, forwards Brian Masiolo and the Congolese duo if Laurent Tumba and Demonde Selenge. Ulinzi will be in desperate need of a win if only to restore some level of confidence. With several internationally capped players the likes Francis Ochieng, Mulinge Munandi, Geoffrey Kokoyo, Lawrence Owino and Stephen Waruru they will offer Leopards a massive challenge.“We beat Rangers last weekend and we are confident we can also beat the champions. Morale is very high in camp,” Muyoti said on Friday.

The Standard keeps up a good analysis that calms any disruption nerves. Robin Toskin also compiles a had to head analysis.

Even more good news from the Standard is that Imbem is fully fit. 

AFC Leopards have been boosted by the return of their talisman Itubu Imbem ahead of this afternoon’s clash with champions Ulinzi Stars at the Afraha Stadium. Imbem has been out of action for more than six weeks after fracturing his jaw during the teams tour of Western Province in January. His return to the team is a major boost for stand-in coach Eliud Omukuyia since the Congolese international was the team’s top goal scorer last season with six goals. He is also expected to fill the gap left by striker Brian Masiolo who has been ruled out because of a knee injury. Leopards will also be without central defenders Martin Imbalala and John Amboko, who are both nursing ankle injuries. Team manager Bernard Onyango said they would start with skipper Nicholas Muyoti and Gabriel Israel at the central defence in the absence of the injured players.

To crown it all, KenyanStar has probably the best and most detailed pre-match analysis.

Our big preview this weekend moves from the busy city of Nairobi and head to the flamingo town of Nakuru. Kenyan premier league defending champions Ulinzi stars will be welcoming former giants AFC Leopards at their Afraha stadium backyard, in the glare of Supersport cameras. One might argue that the Afraha stadium may not be an away ground for the Leopards as they enjoy a vast fan base in the Rift valley town, but the pundits will be knocked down hard with the fact that the home team, Ulinzi stars only lost a single match on the pitch last season.

The stadium which has a capacity of holding over 5,000 fans is expected to swell and flood with a mixture of ingwe and Ulinzi fanatics. A section of the Leopards fans are also expected to travel to the town, but will be met with a troop of die had Ulinzi fans especially from the Lanet barracks.

Away from the fan supremacy and onto the pitch, this match promises to give more than what meets the eye. AFC Leopards are fresh from an emphatic 3-1 victory over Rangers FC and may also be motivated by the fact that at last they might have settled their leadership soap operas. Ulinzi on the other hand are wounded soldiers who would want to regain their feet after starting the season on a sour loosing 4 straight competitive matches, with coach Benjamin Nyangweso branding the tie a “must win” case.

Last season, Ulinzi prevailed over Leopards home and away, beating them 2-0 at home and finishing off with a 1-0 victory away. But the Leopards side they played last season has all changed, with the exception of a few like Demonde Selenga. All the others are fresh blood signed in the January transfer period. But on the soldiers’ side, the team still remains compact without major changes.

Two former Leopards players in the name of Collins Kisuya and Geoffrey Kokoyo will face with the team they once played for in their build ups to their now towering soccer careers.

The bull fights

Each team displays a totally different approach to the game and this is promising an interesting game ahead. Leopards’ game entails a lot of patience building from behind and attacking from the flanks when they enter the opponents half. Their speedy wingers in the name of Salim Kinje and Demonde Selenga proved they can fully do the duty by destroying Rangers in the same manner.

For Ulinzi, they are known to square things from their own half. Building up slowly then hitting the run on the counter. Their wingers, Stephen Waruru and Chester Okoyo have been seen to exhibit immense speed especially on the counter and this will be Leopards’ main headache. However that has not paid off so much this season as they have not been seen to fully utilize their game plan, but as the league now begins to hot up, the soldiers are expected to be riffled from their back seats and inject a considerable amount of seriousness.

The biggest battle of the game will be on the flanks: Salim Kinje against Collins Kisuya and Demonde Selenga against Mulinge Ndetto.

AFC Leopards main undoing will be their goalkeeping with Barnabas Tiema proving not reliable in their last two games. The goal he conceded against rangers this weekend probably displayed a lot not to be desired from the custodian. He spilled in a seemingly harmless shot from Joseph Nyaga; though his team went on to win the game.

For Ulinzi, coach Nyangweso will have to worry much about his attack which has not seen the net for 360 minutes of football time this year.

Team News

The ingwe coach was conspicuously missing in action last week and with the stand-in coach Robert Matano fielding a winning team different from the one Bollen played with against Tusker, he might as well be on his way out.

Martin Imbalambala still remains doubtful for the weekend game after he picked up an injury in their first match against Tusker FC. There are no other players worrying Matano with injuries.

On the Ulinzi side, Coach Nyangweso will be worried by the absence of centre back Josiah Okello due to suspension while his deputy captain Evans Amuoka will also miss after suffering a twisted arm in their away trip to Egypt late last month.

Probable line ups

Ulinzi stars:

Francis Ochieng will most likely start in goal with Mulinge Ndetto starting at Right back. The absence of Josiah Okello will force Hussein Mohammed to move into centyral defense to partner with Geoffrey Kokoyo, while Collins Kisuya who made an impressive debut against Gor over the weekend will comfortably start at left back.

In the centre of the pack, captain Stephen Ochollah is dimmed to start, partnering with Erick Apul. Lawrence owino might be gifted a chance to start on the left side of mid field especially after the regular starter Chester Okoyo has failed to impress in the last few matches. Stephen Waruru will most likely start on the right. In attack Mike Barasa will most likely partner with George Otieno, with Otieno dipping more into the midfield and Barasa playing a few yards ahead of him.

AFC Leopards:

Matano might still go with the line up that beat Rangers over the weekend. Tiema stays in goal with John Amboko and captain Nicholas Muyoti partnering in central defense.

Douglas Okumu will play the left side of midfield with Edgar waodo on the right.

In midfield, Abraham Cokie will partner with the influential Salim Kinje with Selenga and Laurent Tumba playing the flanks. The attack will see Brian Masiolo and Joseph Okumu hunt for goals.

Post Election Victory

In every election, there emerge the victors and the vanquished.

Sundays elections, boycotted by Julius Ochiel, saw the bouncing back of Alex Ole Magelo as Chairman of the Club.

Ochiel, as expected, cried foul.

Magelo as expected, duly presented the returns of the elections to the Registrar of Societies, or the Registrar General, as the case may be) who duly recognized the team as duly elected.

The clearance of Magelo by the Registrar was reported in most media including Supersport.

Magelo then took over the team.

The Standard reported this.

Magelo officially takes over at AFC Leopards

By Oscar Pilipili

Wrangles that have been part of AFC Leopards appear to be over after the Interim Management Board handed over the KPL team to the office led by chairman Alex Ole Magelo.

The Board that was chaired by Commissioner for Sports Gordon Oluoch handed over the team at an official ceremony at Kabete Technical, the team’s training venue
The Registrar of Societies mandated ole Magelo to run the Leopards office after he was declared winner of elections held at Nyayo National Stadium last Sunday but boycotted by rival Julius Ochiel.

The chairman vowed to use his management experience to ensure Leopards regain their lost glory and unite all stakeholders.

He said: "I’m not at Leopards by chance. I first joined the team as a committee member before rising to the rank of chairman."

Magelo said his target was to win the league and he immediately announced bonuses for performing players.

To motivate the players, Magelo said a league win will attract award of Sh3,000 per player, draw Sh1,500 and an additional Sh3,000 for scorer per goal, all these out of his pocket.

He urged players to pledge allegiance to the team rather than individuals and as well as maintain discipline if they hope to prosper in the premier league.

"History has proven beyond doubt that my character is for victory, and under my guidance you will win, win, win," he emphasised.

Magelo is credited with helping Leopards, and by using his own resources, to move out of the lower tier Nationwide league where it was languishing two years ago.
The chairman urged fans to rally behind the team and work in unity with their counterparts from Gor Mahia side to promote the giant community clubs.

He encouraged fans to behave responsibly and warned that Leopards would take drastic action against any unruly fan during their matches.

"We shall not tolerate fans that involve themselves in hooliganism against either players, officials or opposing fans and we have the capacity to deal with them," he warned.

Head of technical bench Robert Matano praised officials for not interfering with the playing unit during the politicking period.

Dan Shikanda, a member of the Interim Board, urged ole Magelo’s office to concentrate on administrative matters and let the technical bench handle players.

The KFF came out urging Ochiel to support the new Chairman.

Outgoing AFC Leopards chairman Julius Ochiel has been urged to join hands with the newly elected team led by Alex Ole Magelo who were elected in Saturday polls at Nyayo Stadium last weekend."Ochiel has done well in the time he was in office-helping the club avoid relegation as well as finalising the sponsorship deal with Mumias Sugar. He should give the new team a chance to improve on his gains," said Kenya Football Federation (KFF) secretary general Lodvick Aduda. Magelo has already extended an olive branch to his predecessor for the sake of the clubs unity and football administrators believe it is in the interest of everyone that the officials work together for the sake of the club. "You have seen how a divided club easily falls. Ochiel should heed to the call and work together with the new chairman in a bid to take Leopards to the next level," opined Nairobi KFF branch chairman Simon Mugo. "Going to court is not the best option because even FIFA statues don't allow this. If indeed bonafide club members elected Magelo, Ochiel should accept their verdict because these are the same members who put him in office,"Aduda explained.

It is not clear what Ochiel's next move is however. There were reports that there was a case filed in court and which was scheduled to be heard on 16th March. If the dispute on the leadership goes on, this will lend credence to the opinion of Charles Nyende in the Nation.

In he meantime, one of the key victors of the elections on Sunday was the team itself as it went on to Register a morale boosting victory over Rangers.

Hopefully, the team's interest will prevail and it will continue to be the victors instead of some personal interests who may be fighting over the leadership.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Post Match: Rangers

Ten man Leopards beat a stubborn Rangers 3-1 at the City Stadium this afternoon. And no! There was no red card. This is just a dig at the antics of goalkeeper Barnabas Tiema who, for a second successive match, made it look like Leopards was playing without a goalkeeper.

Tiema's blunder cut the Leopards goal difference to nil and blighted an otherwise good performance by the Leopards who were without Imbalambala in the line up, though he had been voted the Man of the Match by fans voting on

Wandera also came on a second half substitute though the team that started the Tusker match largely featured.

Also missing from the bench was Leopards coach Bollen who had been quoted in the Standard morning newspaper as threatening to quit. After the match, coach Eliud Omukuyia stated he was elated by the performance and happy for the boys. "They have responded well to last weeks defeat and it is a morale booster and will help to bring the fans together" he said.

Line Up: Tiema, Waodo, Okumu Douglas, Amboko, Muyoti, Cokie, Selenga, Khamis, Masiolo, Okumu Joseph, Tumba.

How It All Happened

2nd min: First attack by Rangers. Taking the game to Leopards

5th min: Wasted corner taken by Khamis. Okumu being held in the penalty area but ref not spotting offence

11th min: Selenga takes corner this time.

12th min: Okwemba, former Leopards boy, takes a pop at Leopards goal but misses target.

14th min: Masiolo breaks through but is flagged offside after a quick freekick by Leopards.

15th min: Kauka lobs goalkeeper Tiema. He hits the crossbar and leopards escape. Tiema clearly at fault as he came out early but missed ball.

16th min: Muyoti clears good pass that would have been a tap in for Rangers if it got to the striker. Leopards under pressure.

17th min: Okwemba hits the crossbar after Tiema comically misses a cross.

22nd min:Leopards defence still under pressure. Nyaga almost scores after defensive lapse.

23rd min: Rangers waste one of the ten corners they got in the match.

24th min: Muyoti gives pin point pass to Okumu J but the same is cut out by Rangers for a corner. Great thinking.

27th min: Nyaga misses sitter.

28th min: Okumu cuts through Rangers defence and send a pass from the goal line that misses everyone who has moved forward.

29th min: Leopards on the back foot. Angoli caught offside to spare Leopards blushes.

34th min: Selenga on the attack. Misses clear chance. Showing promise but not yet accurate.

36th min: Khamis booked.

37th min: Okwemba corner comes to nought.


52 min: Mangoli on, Tumba off

56th min: GOAL! Khamis (Salim Kinje) scores after lobbing Webo.

59th min: Okwemba booked for taking freekick quickly and not playing to the whistle.

60th min: Amboko booked.

62nd min: Okwemba fouls Khamis. He's a lucky boy he isn't sent off.

67th min: GOAL! Selenga cuts in with great pass. Mukhwana clears for corner as Masiolo was reaching to get to end of that pass. Corner taken by Selenga and Okumu Joseph scores after an assist from the other Okumu (Douglas).

69th min: GOAL! Okumu J hits the cross. Khamis passes to Masiolo who scores from close range. Game over!

71st min: Tiema injured in meleee after angers corner

74th: Aluvisia on, Masiolo off.

79th min: Rangers corner. Taken very low and poorly and launches a counter by Leopards. Mandela booked after foul on Okumu. Its 2-2 on yellow cards!

81st min: Aluvisia nearly makes it four but Webo saves brilliantly.

82nd min: Another fruitless rangers corner.

86th min: Wandera on, Khamis off.

87th min: Rangers freekick sandwiches two Rangers corners.

90th min: Ochien g blasts free-kick to Leopards wall. 

90th min: GOAL! Nyaga scores after a Tiema blunder lets in the shot.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Election Fever

The circus of Leopards elections has been covered on this blog so many times that it is beginning to sound like a broken record.

But tomorrow is Election Day.

That would be a simple thing to do surely. Until we read on Thursday in the press that there elections may not take place. Ochiel citing a letter dated 1st March 2011 received from the Assistant Registrar of Societies, Mr. Joseph Onyango, rubbished the decision by the Interim Board to call elections.

The same news was reported in the Standard:

Charles Nyende of the Nation also reported the story:
The forthcoming AFC Leopards election that were to be conducted by the government-constituted club’s interim management board on Sunday have been put on hold by the office of the Registrar General.
The Registrar General has instead directed that election be held in June after a new Fifa-compliant constitution is drafted and approved by the club at a Special General Meeting.
In a letter dated March 1 to Sports Commissioner Gordon Oluoch, Deputy Registrar of Societies Joseph Onyango advised that the interim board be withheld until June when fresh elections can be held. Oluoch who chairs the board said yesterday he had not received such communication and “we will regard it as a rumour”.

The Leopards interim board last week announced election will be conducted on Sunday using the same registry that was utilised during the violence filled aborted polls of February 13. Onyango acknowledged receiving a letter from the board giving notice of the Sunday election but said new information had been brought to his office necessitating a change in the Leopard’s situation. 
Onyango quoted Fifa Rules, Articles 17 and 18 that prohibit third parties from making any decisions on behalf of or for members of AFC Leopards.
When constituting the interim board on February 23, Sports Minister Paul Otuoma said the failed elections of February 13 had left an untenable vacuum in the club leadership.
But the Leopards office under the chairmanship of Julius Ochiel (pictured, left) refuted the claim saying the law allowed them to stay in office pending successful-held elections.

Football Kenya Limited endorsed the Ochiel office last month and mandated them to review the club’s constitution pending new elections.

If you had been keeping the score using this article on this blog, that would have sounded as 4-4. 

Moments later, Gordon Olouch was quoted as saying that the Assistant Registrar's decision had been quashed by the Registrar himself. 

We shall post those letters once we get copies of the same.

The Standard even questioned the seeming confusion at the Registrar's office.
The recent happenings at AFC Leopards is a matter of great concern. The club, who lost their opening match of the KPL season at the weekend, is threatened on every side. The leadership wrangles, which engulfed the club the better part of last year, seem not to be going away. The matter was made worse by two aborted elections which were disrupted by hooligans claiming to be members. It appeared that the move by the Sports Minister to form a board to run the club would end the wrangles once and for all, but this may not be the case following a new directive from the Registrar of Societies. The whole matter now brings to question the role of the Registrar of Societies. It is disheartening to note that the same Registrar of societies had written to the Ministry of Sports to form an interim committee to manage the club, only to turn around and disown the same. While the issues raised by the registrar in disowning his earlier directive makes sense, we wonder whether he had not taken those issues into consideration. As it is, the Minister of Sports Paul Otuoma has been left greatly embarrassed because the committee he put in place is no longer recognised.
Questions about the conduct of the Registrar of Societies are bound to be raised over the matter. This office cannot escape blame for the confusion at Leopards’ management, as they seem to side with one side of the officials. The Registrar of Societies must be above reproach in these matters and consult widely before making certain decisions.

Then the website carried a story that the Court had granted an injunction against the elections.

But the website denied that the court had granted the orders.

Oh boy! What a charade! What a confusion!

In the midst of all this confusion, Winston Kituyi withdrew from the race for Chairman and had some scathing words for some of the officials at the Societies Registry.

The Star reported:

WINSTON Kituyi has withdrawn his candidature for the chairman’s post in AFC Leopards elections whose due date now is a subject of speculation after the deputy registrar of societies shelved the exercise. 

The club elections earlier scheduled for this Sunday have been postponed to June. Kituyi in a statement cited lack of impartiality at the registrar’s office, which he alluded favoured Julius Ochiel, another candidate for the top seat.

“Weak legislative frameworks in the management of football clubs has left Leopards at the whims of cartels and corrupt elements in government, thus making it impossible for an environment that is conducive to free and fair elections,” he charged.

Kituyi also took issue with the deputy registrar Joseph Onyango for challenging the legality of the Interim Elections Board, which was constituted by Sports Minister Paul Otuoma specifically to organise the Leopards’ elections.

Kituyi went on to lambast Onyango for nullifying the results of the ‘Mlolongo’ elections held at Nyayo Stadium on January 6 which saw both Alex Ole Magelo and Kituyi claim victory after Ochiel snubbed the polls. 

He said the deputy registrar made a turn around and nullified the elections, querying the validity of the notice which he had earlier accepted. “Communications between two government offices is copied suspiciously to Ochiel yet statements are never made public. My complaints over the nullification of the first election in January have never been responded to by the registar’s office,” charged Kituyi.

He said the government failed to provide adequate security to ensure free and fair elections during the second exercise on February 13.The departure of Kituyi from the scene will leave it for Ochiel and former chairman Magelo to battle it out if and when the elections are called. Kituyi suggested that the person who should run the club must have the legitimacy of a free and fair process

Whatever happens, and in the face of the impending battle for the control of the Leopards, we hope the team on the pitch will not be distracted but will play to win and not use the Election YES, Election NO confusion as an excuse for any loss on the pitch.

Pre Match: Rangers

Well, well, well. The second match of the season is upon us. There seem to be fewer predictions this time. But Carol Radul gives Leopards the L treatment once again with a 2-0 loss to Rangers. Seems that soon we shall be saying: As rare as Carol Radul giving Leopards a W in her prediction column.

But we cant blame her seriously. The performance by Leopards last weekend was abysmal whilst Rangers were the top dogs downing Gor Mahia 3-0 and if that score wasn't a cricket score, it lead to Gor fans auditioning for the Kenya cricket team by bowling some stones.

AFC Leopards v Rangers

City Stadium, Nairobi

Sunday 6th March 2011

4.00pm (live on Supersport*)

The trouble ridden, wrangle laden, controversy loving AFC Leopards finally give their fans something to smile about. Let us pray so. Ingwe were 0-2 losers to Tusker, match where they were always second best. Their second KPL fixture would have been easy, on paper, but as Gor Mahia found out, write off Rangers at your own risk. Not because of last weekend's 3-0 result against K'Ogallo but rather due the experience in the Rangers line up. With the likes of Pascal Ochieng, Charles Okwemba, Kevin Ochieng, Joseph Nyaga and Lawrence Webo, Rangers present a clear and present danger and Ingwe, who struggled against Tusker must guard against underrating their opponents. This should be another closely contested tie.

Prediction AFC Leopards 0 Rangers 0

The Standard had recently carried out an interesting piece on Lawrence Webo, the Rangers custodian who joined Rangers from Ingwe. The article by James Waindi stated:-

Rangers’ custodian Lawrence Webo has said he was sad that his spell at Sunday’s Kenyan Premier League (KPL) opponents AFC Leopards had ended on a sour note.

The 31-year-old custodian who had stints with top Rwandese clubs Rayon Sports and Police FC, in his career before joining Leopards in 2009, left the 13-time champions in December for Rangers FC after Leopards’ technical bench decided to replace him with Barnabas Tiema.

To compound his woes there was battle in getting a release letter for him to join bitter Premier League rivals Rangers.

He, however, said he does not hold anything against the club and noted that he would just focus on winning the local title with his new employers who are featuring in the local league for the second season.

"I’m very sorry that I left," said Webo, who was instrumental in Leopards’ battle to avoid relegation last season. "Sadly, things happened in the final few months there that I regret. But everyone has his character. I can say I was pushed out of Leopards because my wish was to stay with the club."

"The club, though, gave me a lot, and the supporters were at my side from day one. But there are things that happen in one’s life," added Webo, who has been capped more than four times.

"I spent more than 12 good months at Leopards, and have many happy memories," said Webo, who began his professional career with former league side Mumias Sugar before moving to Rwanda in search of greener pastures.

"Those were very beautiful moments at a great club. I don’t think things are very different today, because it is the same fans who still support the team and who created the philosophy, the daily routine, and the club’s message."

Despite the sour end to their working relationship, Webo said he still had much to thank Leopards for.

"If I say I was eyeing revenge against Leopards I would not be a professional and I may end up making mistakes on the field. Whatever happened has happened and now I have a future with Rangers and I want to win trophies with them," said Webo.

He said despite the fact they had been written off in the league’s race by pundits, Rangers could still put up a good show in the campaign and even win it. He anticipates an action packed fixture against his immediate former employers on Sunday and believes Ingwe would suffer the same fate as Gor Mahia who lost 3-0 to the perceived under dogs on the first day of the league.

"We have an equally strong team just like Leopards and but it is vital we play with 100 per cent commitment, give our all," he said.