Friday, August 26, 2011

Moving On Up

It is nine matches to go and twenty seven points to play for and the Leopards have shown progress in the last few league matches with an upward trend on the points graph (see below).

The remaining fixtures are:-


10    Bandari    v       AFC                 Mombasa 15:00

24    Sony        v       AFC                 Awendo 15:00


2      AFC         v       Gor Mahia        Nyayo 15:00

15    Karuturi    v       AFC                 Karuturi 15:00

23    AFC          v      Mathare            Nyayo 17:00

29    Chemelil  v      AFC                   Afraha 15:00


5      AFC        v       Congo United      Mumias 15:00

16    AFC        v       Ulinzi Stars          Nyayo 19:30

26    KCB        v       AFC                    City 15:00

*the matches are subject to change by KPL

The table toppers are still Tusker FC with 41 points. Gor Mahia, the bitter rivals of the Leopards are second having previously tied with the Leopards at Games 2 and 9. Gor also caught up with Tusker at Games 15 and 16.

Gor had a 12 point gap with the Leopards but the same has been narrowed to 7. Tusker however still maintain a 12 point gap with the Leopards from a high of 14. It is expected that Leopards will bridge the gap even more when the League resumes in September.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Post Match: City Stars (H)

Leopards came from behind to beat Nairobi City Stars 2-1.

The Nation has the story:-

AFC Leopards’ revival under Dutch coach Jan Koops continued with a 2-1 win over Nairobi City Stars in a Kenyan Premier League match at the Nyayo National Stadium on Sunday.

On Wednesday, Leopards thrashed Sofapaka 3-1 at the same venue.
City Stars drew first blood when George Odari scored in the 52nd minute after collecting a superb pass from Daniel Serunkuma.
Stars’ lead lasted for just three minutes as Oscar Kadenge pulled Leopards level in the 55th minute.
Collins Osuya scored the winner with a sublime free kick in the 75th minute.

KPL website takes an angle of Top 8 battles with the story:-

George Odary gave City Stars a 52nd minute lead after an assist from Ugandan import Dan Serunkuma but Oscar Kadenge struck back in the 55th minute, his second goal in as many matches.

Collins Kisuya hit the winner with a 75th minute free-kick.

Leopards went four matches unbeaten, three of them victories, but the streak will be put to the test in the coming matches, beginning in Mombasa against Bandari on September 10 followed by a clash with bitter rivals Gor Mahia on September 18.

AFC Leopards came from a goal down to beat City Stars 2-1 in an entertaining KPL match played at the Nyayo stadium on Sunday afternoon. The win lifts AFC Leopards to 10th position in the KPL table with 29 points from 21 matches.On Wednesday at the same venue, AFC Leopards crashed 2009 champions Sofapaka 3-1 to overturn their first leg 3-1 defeat to the same side.

After wasting dozens of chances in the first half that ended in barren, AFC Leopards found themselves on the receiving end 6 minutes after the start of the second half when George Odari lifted City Stars to premature glory in the 52 minute after receiving a lovely through ball from Ugandan Dan Serunkuma.

City Stars’ glorious moments lasted for only four minutes as on-form Oscar Kadenge notched in his second goal of the week three minutes later to draw parity for the Leopards.Kadenge was on the mark on Wednesday after scoring one of the fastest goals this season so far against Sofapaka in less than a minute from kick off. 

On Sunday his shot proved too strong for City Stars keeper Fredrick Majani who fabled with the ball only to see it roll past the line much to the delight of the partisan blue stripped crowd. 

Left full back Collins Kisuya drilled in the winner for AFC Leopards with a fantastic curl beyond the City Stars’ wall from a free kick in the 71st minute.

AFC Leopards assistant coach Mickey Weche speaking after the match  attributed the team’s recent form to team work and self confidence saying  “The players have started to believe in themselves and we are happy the team is coming back to good shape. It has taken us sometime but we are now seeing cohesion, confidence and positive stability in the team. It is a good result and we thank the players for their determination and the fans for their support.” He said.

Weche however called on more fans to come out and support their team in their next matches.

On the other end, the loss is not welcome news for City Stars who continue to sink deeper in relegation zone as they remain rooted at 2nd from the tail end with 15 points from 21 matches, a point above bottom placed Congo United who also lost their match against Sofapaka on Sunday in Mombasa.

The KPL League takes two weeks break to give room for FKL Cup fixtures next weekend and Harambee Stars vs. Guinea Bissau Africa Cup of Nations match on 3rd September.

2Gor Mahia209921811736
4Ulinzi Stars219842115635
5Chemelil Sugar219752216634
7Western Stima218671313030
8Karuturi Sports218671314-130
10AFC Leopards2192102224-229
11Thika United218492427-328
12Mathare United2151061817125
13Sony Sugar206591623-723
15City Stars2136121123-1215
16Congo United2135131434-2014

Pre Match: City Stars (H)

Leopards entertain Nairobi City Stars at the Nyayo National Stadium on Sunday, 21st August 2011 at 4pm.

Collins Okinyo of predicts a 2-1 win for the Leopards.

AFC Leopards Vs City Stars (Nyayo Stadium) Leopards are still on cloud nine after their deserved 3-1 thrashing of Sofapaka and coach Jan Koops will be hoping to continue from where they left when they face Nairobi City Stars. Their opponents have a new caretaker coach in charge after ken Odhiambo was given a month off to recharge his batteries. Gideon Ochieng is in charge for the next four weeks and he will look to make a positive debut. Mike Baraza has bene in great formand will be the man that Leopards call upon while Oscar Kadenge is back in the groove since joining Leopards from Tusker. Should he play, Jimmy Bagaye will be facing his former side for the first time since joining Leopards. Our Prediction:2-1

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Post Match: Sofapaka (H)

Leopards avenged the 3-1 loss in the first leg to Sofapaka by winning 3-1 last night.

MichezoAfrika had the following story by John Munene
A revamped AFC Leopards reversed a first leg 3-1 defeat to emerge winners in the second leg match against Sofapaka .The entertaining fast paced  Kenyan Premier League match was played at Nyayo stadium on Wednesday and served as a sweet revenge after AFC had fallen by a similar margin in the first leg encounter.

AFC Leopards got off to a flying start after Oscar Kadenge lobbed past Sofapaka keeper Duncan Ochieng for an early goal after Martin Imbalambala had singled him upfront with a long ball. The goal that came 50 seconds after center referee had blown the kick-off whistle is a sure contender for the fastest KPL goal this season.

Dodo Kayombo equalized for Sofapaka ten minutes later with a powerful header from a Titus Mulama's free kick. The goal seemed to re-energize Batoto ba Mungu who showed signs of  clicking specially in the midfield. Fit again Anthony Kimani combined well with late inclusion Humphrey Mieno. Mieno was drafted into the squad after defense kingpin Edgar "Fighter" was suddenly taken ill before kickoff.

In the 18th minute, a careless Sofapaka keeper Duncan Ochieng fabled when he lazily threw the ball to Dodo Kayombo. Sensing the keeper was off his line, Mike Baraza gave AFC the lead again after he outwitted Dodo Kayombo , pounced on the loose ball and drilled it into an empty net .The halftime whistle blew with AFC leopards leading 2-1

After the break, Sofapaka slowly started dominating proceedings but it was evident they were missing lethal striker John Baraza up front as nothing much came out of their blunt attacking line-up. On form Oscar Kadenge had a great chance to extend AFC Leopards from a good Mike Baraza kick but missed the target again.

In the 69th minute, Humprey Mieno came close to equalizing but AFC custodian Patrick Matasi parried the shot for a corner. Another quick attack by Batoto ba Mungu ended up in an offside flag for Anthony Keymani.

Dutch Coach Jans Koops’ tactical prowess then came into full light as his substitute, Laurent Tumba who had come on for Emmanuel Tostao headed home the third goal with eight minutes to the end to send the blue army into wild celebrations.

Center referee Daniel Githaka was forced to stop the match briefly to ensure all fires lit by the joyful AFC Leopards crowd had been put off. The crowd quickly obliged thus allowing the match to go on.
AFC custodian Patrick Matasia blocked Francis Ouma's shot and again prevented an absent John Onami from grabbing an injury minute goal for Batoto ba Mungu.

After six minutes of added time, the match ended 3-1 in favor of the hosts as Kimanzi walked back into the dressing room with head burrowed in his hands as the league is getting tough on his boys.

AFC leopards were on cloud nine after a well deserved 3-1 win over Sofapaka in an entertaining Kenya Premier League fixture played at the Nyayo National Stadium on Wednesday evening. As early as the 3rd minute, Oscar Kadenge had already shaken the net even before the game could take its cool with Sofapaka trying to get their feet into the game.

After good play from midfield involving Bernard Mang’oli and Martin Imbalambala, Kadenge pounced on the ball from the right wing, raced down Thomas Wanyama before unleashing the shot from the wing which Sofapaka keeper Duncan Ochieng had mistaked for a cross.

Sofapaka seemed to have finally found their footing when Dodo Kayombo headed in at the 9th minute from the far post after Titus Mulama’s free kick. However, Sofapaka’s leaking defense which had an unusual pairing of Dodo Kayombo and Mudde Musa gave up another goal just eight minutes after scoring.

Lethal striker Mike Barasa pounced on an intended pass to Dodo Kayombo from Duncan Ochieng before lobbing it past Ochieng as he raced to amend the mess. With the goal, AFC looked to be the more commanding side of the game with Salim Kinje, Bernard Mang’oli and Charles Okwemba knitting up a powerful combination from midfield.

Just a minute later, the now porous Sofapaka defense almost conceded another goal in the same manner but this time round Ochieng was more swift, cutting out the ball from Emmanuel Tostao’s feet.

Leopard’s defensive pairing of Martin Imbalambala and Jonas Naimana created a “twin tower”, cutting out all Sofapaka’s attacks from the air and on the ground. With Jonas and Imbalambala reading Sofapaka’s mode of deep cross attacks, Batoto Ba Munu saw all their efforts being thwarted with Keeper Patrick Matasi also keen with his jumps.

Leopards manage to control the game and held on to the lead until half time.

Come the second half, SDofapaka tried to inject some pace into the game with the aim of netting an equalizer and hopefully find the winner. 25 minutes from the restart, Humphrey Mieno making a comeback to the team with his Club Africainne move shelved for December, had a chance denied by Matasi when he lutched onto a cross from the right.

Coach Francis Kimanzi decided to bring in Patrick Kagogo and Francis Ouma in a bid to add strength to the attack but this did not work out. AFC continued with their domination of the match and only luck separated them from stretching the lead.

Ingwe’s icing on the cake was set up by former Sofapaka striker Laurent Tumba who headed in with 78 minutes on the clock from a Charles Okwemba corner. Tumba did not celebrate much the goal, being scored against his former bosses but only raised his arms up in an apparent “thank you” to the one above.

Leopards managed to hold on to the lead until the final whistle and it was all song and dance as players, fans and team officials celebrated the all important win. The win now sees Leopards revenge on the 3-1 thrashing they were handed by Sofapaka in the first leg.

Leopards now have 26 points out of 20 matches and now move to tenth position while Sofapaka remain un moved at 6th with 30 points. AFC will next meet City Stars in Nairobi while Sofapaka will be preparing for the long trip to Mombasa for the Congo date.

AFC Leopards recorded a stunning 3-1 win over Sofapaka on Wednesday night, a complete reversal of the score by which Sofapaka won in their first Kenyan Premier League meeting of the season at the same National Stadium on June 29.

Oscar Kadenge, Mike Baraza and second half substitute Laurent Tumba completed the rout for Leopards, Sofapaka’s consolation being Dodo Kayombo’s equalizer at 1-1 on the 12th minute.

Sofapaka buried their faces in their hands at the end of a night coach Francis surely realising lack of ability at goalkeeping and that his team suffered from positional changes forced by recent departures and injuries.

Duncan Ochieng’ was stunned by a first minute shot from the right flank that flew over and dipped into the net. Oscar Kadenge delivered the killer blow after a lightning raid built from mid-pitch to Bernard Mangoli who put Kadenge through.

But more alert ‘keepers would have seen Kadenge’s run-up and positioned themselves well. Ochieng’ evidently over the traditional weight he was as a top goalie a couple of seasons ago, was to prove a liability when he gave away the ball that led to Leopards second -- in the 17th minute – after Sofapaka had equalized. He passed the ball to Kayombo just outside the 18-yard area when the defender had Baraza rushing in. The striker dispossessed the Sofapaka man to plant the ball into an empty net.

When Sofapaka defended a 82nd minute free kick from outside the box, Ochieng’ was again in no man’s land when Tumba headed in the goal that signaled no return for Sofapaka.

Kayombo’s goal for Sofapaka came off a free kick floated by Titus Mulama from 30 metres and the Congolese import heading hard past Leopards ‘keeper Patrick Matasia.

There was a last minute pull-out from the Sofapaka defence by Harambee Stars lynchpin Edgar “Fighter” Ochieng’. Including the recent departure to Europe by another central defender and Sofapaka skipper James Situma, the team’s backline was a makeshift that had even drafted in midfielder Musa Mudde at full-back. Up front, lethal striker John Baraza was also away sick.

With But while there was a pinch of luck in all their three goals, there would be no taking away anything from a spirited and hard working Leopards who followed up their strong showing during a 0-0 draw with Tanzania giants, Simba, in a friendly on Saturday in Arusha.

AFC LEOPARDS - 1. Patrick Matasi: 5. Edwin Baraza, 24. Collins Kisuya, 4. Martin Imbalambala, 17. Jonas Nahimana, 22. Bernard Mangoli, 27. Oscar Kadenge (30. Samuel “Misse” Mwangi, 88’), 21. Emmanuel Tostao (8. Laurent Tumba, 66’), 18. Salim Kinje Khamis (6. Nicholas Muyoti, 49’), 10. Charles Okwemba (captain), 11. Mike Baraza
Reserves not used - 34. Abel Omuhaya, Gk; 26. Robert Syongoh, 14. Silas Aluvisia, 7. Brian Masiolo
Scorers - 27. Oscar Kadenge (1’), 11. Mike Baraza (17’), 8. Laurent Tumba (82’)
Coach – Jan Koops [The Netherlands]
SOFAPAKA - 39. Duncan Ochieng’: 8. Dodo Kayombo, 7. Thomas Wanyama (18. Francis Ouma, 71’), 25. Musa Mudde, 20. Humphrey Ochieng' Mieno, 11. Anthony Kimani, 9. Bob Mugalia, 21. John Njoroge, 22. Heretier Luvualu (10. Patrick Kagogo, 57’), 23. Titus Mulama (captain), 19. John Onami
Reserves - 28. Pascal Penda, Gk; 15. Kilonzo Tumba, 17. Eli Asieche, 30. Joseph Nyaga, 16. Collins Omogo
Scorer - 8. Dodo Kayombo (12’)
Coach - Francis Kimanzi
Referee - Isaac Ochieng’ Assistant ref - David Otianga Asst ref - Oliver Ouma Reserve ref - Haji Adede Match commissioner - Daniel Githaka

AFC Leopards have leapt off position 12 in the 16 team Kenyan Premier League log after a deserved 3-1 win clawing of 2009 Champions Sofapaka. Leopards got to the perfect start of the game when, just after the start, defender Martin Imbalambala sent a ball upfront that found former Ulinzi striker Mike Baraza. On the turn Baraza sent it to the right to feed June acquisition Oscar Kadenge. Kadenge’s cross into the box sailed above a spring boarding Duncan Ochieng and within the first minute Leopards was 1-0 up. Sofapaka drew level 11 minutes later when skipper on the day Titus Mulama sent forward a left footed free kick from 30 yards.  The floated ball was met by a speeding Sofapaka central defender Dodo Kayombo who out jumped the entire Leopards defense to send in a powerful header past keeper Patrick Matasi. Leopards were back in front just five minutes later when master of half chances Mike Baraza did just that – capitalised on a half chance. On 17 minutes, last man Kayombo miscued a kick and from the blind side Baraza appeared, got the ball and sent it goal wards from the edge of the box. An ill positioned Duncan Ochieng fluffed the ball as it rolled into the net for Leopard's second. The goal was the ninth in the league for Baraza who now ties Moses Arita of Thika United atop the scorer’s charts. A tactical Leopards’ playing purposeful football could have gone 3-1 up on 35 minutes had Emmanuel Tostao taken his chance well. Baraza got the ball to Tostao but from the left, his feeble shot was well taken care off by seasoned keeper Ochieng. Minute’s later right back Thomas Wanyama of Sofapaka delivered a high ball into the box but Humphrey Mieno and John Onami who were unmarked in the box were both caught offside.It could have been worse for Sofapaka in the 41st minute when makeshift central defender Musa Mudde, naturally a midfielder, had a back pass intercepted by Tostao but an advancing Ochieng cut out the danger. Leopards consolidated their defense when early in the second half coach Jan Koops brought in Nicholas Muyoti to take up the spoilers role. The former skipper came in for Salim Kinje on 49 minutes. Sofapaka also got in Patrick Kagogo for Heritier Luvualu on 57 minutes as Coach Francis Kimanzi hoped to improve his offense.On 62 minutes, a lethal Mike Baraza on the right wing sent a long ball across to advancing Kadenge on the left but his shot to the near post was well arrested by Ochieng. Mieno, who returned from Tunisia this past Saturday, had the best chance to draw batoto ba mungu level but his shot was parried upward for a corner by Leopards keeper Matasi. Wanyama delivered a floated ball into the box which was knocked on backwards to Mieno by Bob Mugalia. On 72 minutes, former Sofapaka striker Laurent Tumba from the left picked up a loose Kadenge in the open but the former Tusker striker, to his own surprise, saw his shot fly past the left upright when it looked easier to score.But Tumba, who replaced Tostao on 66 minutes, got a chance of his own to score when he capitalised on no defending from Sofapaka's shaky defense to nod in a corner kick in the 82 minute. Tumba’s goal made it 3-1, a score that reversed the first leg loss for Leopards to Sofapaka. Kimanzi’s tactical addition of Francis Ouma for Thomas Wanyama on 71 minutes did not result in much as Sofapaka desperately chased the goals but got none. The game ground to a halt after six minutes of added time after the regulation 90. With the win, Leopards moves up to tenth and on 26 points in 20 games as Sofapaka stalls at sixth spot with 30 points. 

AFC Leopards produced their best performance of the season thrashing Sofapaka 3-1 at Nyayo National Stadium on Wednesday evening. Having lost the first leg by the same scoreline in June, Ingwe gained sweet revenge turning on style to outclass the 2009 champions and register their third win in five matches.


2Gor Mahia199821811735
4Ulinzi Stars209742115634
5Chemelil Sugar208751914531
7Karuturi Sports208661313030
9Western Stima208571111029
10AFC Leopards2082102023-326
11Thika United207492327-425
12Mathare United205961817124
13Sony Sugar196491421-722
15City Stars2036111021-1115
16Congo United2035121433-1914

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Pre Match: Sofapaka (H)

The Leopards take on Sofapaka in the return match of the league encounter at the Nyayo National Stadium.

It has been an active time at the Leopards with the launch of the Ingwe TV a few days ago.

Ingwe then travelled to Tanzania to face up with Simba Sports Club in a friendly match which was drawn 0-0. Smart TV travelled for the match too and will be screening it soon, according to some reports. KPL website reported the match as follows:-

AFC Leopards were overwhelmingly the better side in a thrilling friendly with Simba that ended goalless despite the Kenyans’ attacking strength here on Saturday.

Striker Mike Baraza, had three beautiful opportunities to Leopards against his former Dar es Salaam side and was also denied a penalty award after he had dribbled past defenders then brought to the ground inside the box in the 15th minute.

Uganda international striker Emmanuel Okwi had the best chance for Simba when he shot from the left flank in ninth minute only for Leopards ‘keeper Patrick Matasi to pull off a stunning save. But Simba then struggled in attack and never really put any more pressure on the visitors throughout the match.

Simba are preparing for the start of the Tanzania Vodacom League on August 20. But before then, the former league champions will be taking on current champions Young Africans, also of Dar es Salaam, in the pre-season Community Shield clash in Dar on Wednesday.

Simba will then be back here in Arusha for their start-of-season match with local Army side JKT (Jeshi La Kulinda Taifa ] Ol Joro.

SIMBA - 1. Juma Kaseja (18. Aly Mustafa, 70’), 2. Nasoro Cholo (15. Shaban Kapombwe, 55’), 17. Amir Muftah, 6. Victor Costa, 24. Juma Nyoso (5. Kevin Yondani, 70’), 13. Jerry Santos, 11. Salum Mwachaku, 28. Amir Kiemba (21. Rajab Ismael, 65’), 9. Gervus Kago (10. Felix Sunzu, 46’), 25. Emmanuel Okwi (7. Uhuru Suleiman, 46’), 30. Patrick Mafisango
Reserves not used - 22. Wilbert Mweta, Gk; 16. Obadiah Mwangusa, 23. Juma Jabu, 4. Salum Kanoni Coach - Moses Bassena [Uganda]

AFC LEOPARDS - 1. Patrick Matasi : 5. Edwin Wafula Baraza, 26. Robert Siongo (13. Edgar Waudo, 90+), 4. Martin Imbalambala, 17. Jonas Nahimana, 6. Nicholas Muyoti (captain), 10. Charles Okwemba (9. Samuel “Misse” Mwangi, 55’), 27. Oscar Kadenge (14. Silas Aluvisia, 46’), 11. Mike Baraza (8. Brian Masiolo, 80’), 18. Salim “Kinje” Khamis (20. Ramadhan Shaaban, 87’), 21. Emmanuel Tostao (8. Laurent Tumba, 85’)
Reserves not used - 34. Abel Omuhaya, Gk Coach - Jan Koops [The Netherlands]

The clash between Sofapaka and Leopards is a crucial one for both teams as Leopards tries to move up from its current low league position. The Standard in an article by Robin Toskin reports:-

As Sofapaka took a 2-0 cushion to the dressing room over AFC Leopards for the halftime ritual on June 29, their chairman Elly Kalekwa, clearly gleefully enjoying the score line, chuckled: "Sisi ni paka wadogo. AFC ni paka wakubwa!" (We are the smaller cats. AFC are the big cats). Not that Sofapaka has anything to do with the cat, for Sofapaka is an acronym for SOte kama FAmilia, PAmoja Kuafikie Azimio.

But on that night at Nyayo Stadium, a little indulgence in incongruent comparisons would be welcome for Sofapaka faithful as AFC Leopards officials huddled on the VIP stand trying to discern what had hit them.

In the end, Sofapaka triumphed 3-1 thanks to Bob Mugalia’s brace and John Njoroge’s goal while DR Congo-born Burundian defender Jonas Nahimana struck from a free-kick on his debut.

Then, AFC Leopards were in a crisis. But hat storm is over, according to Dutch coach Jan Koops.

"We have made some progress towards solving our defensive problems. Imbalambala (Martin) is a rejuvenated player now and his return to the heart of the defence has brought some stability. Sofapaka are clearly the favourites, but we will put up a good fight," Koops told FeverPitch ahead of tomorrow’s clash at 7pm.

And after their 0-0 draw away to Tanzania giants Simba SC, Koops believes the felines are on the right track to recovery, but must beginning to put away myriad chances they create.

"I would have been worried if we were not creating chances at all. My concern though is we have to tuck them away," 70-year-old Dutchman said.

Koops used the friendly to test goalkeeper Patrick Matasi and came off with flying colours, but the Dutchman insists communication is key between his defenders and the man between the sticks.

Left back Collins Kisuya did not make the trip to Tanzania because of a stomach bug will return in place of Robert Syongoh, while Nahimana partner Imbalambala at the centre and Edwin Baraza manning the right back. Mike Baraza, named joint Kandanda Award winner for July with Jerim Onyango, will lead the frontline again against a Sofapaka side frustrated by Nairobi City Stars last week. With Tusker setting the pace at the top of the table, Francis Kimanzi cut a frustrated figure as City Stars, Sofapaka’s bogey team, pegged back his charges.

"Tell me the system you can use to break down a team that played with ten men behind the ball?" Kimanzi said when asked about his side’s inability to beat City Stars.

But with the availability of creative midfielder Humphrey Mieno whose move to Club Africain was put in the freezer, Kimanzi will hope to have the Allen key to unscrew the Leopards defence. Bar the 1-0 victory over Sony Sugar and three points on the table from their unplayed game against Ulinzi Stars, the sale of utility captain James Situma to Albania’s FK Tirana and the temporary absence Mieno has stripped Sofapaka of pillars. 

The 1-0 loss to Karuturi Sports and a 0-0 draw against City Stars may have left a whiff of blood on the trail of Leopards tomorrow evening. But, only if Koops and Mickey Weche have actually replaced a pack of cards for a defence with real oak wood.

AFC LEOPARDS will be starting without their captain Nicholas Muyoti who will be on the bench when they take on Sofapaka in a “live’ television match at the National Stadium on Wednesday night. Charles Okwemba temporarily takes the skipper’s arm band to lead out what coach Jan Koops has of late settled for being his strongest possible side. They will need to perform at the very top to do well against a formidable Sofapaka.
Surprise starters in the Sofapaka line-up are forwards Heretier Luvualu and John Onami in a side captained by the veteran Kenya international Titus Mulama. The match kicks off at 7pm and will be broadcast on SuperSport 9.

AFC Leopards - 1. Patrick Matasi: 5. Edwin Baraza, 24. Collins Kisuya, 4. Martin Imbalambala, 17. Jonas Nahimana, 22. Bernard Mangoli, 27. Oscar Kadenge, 21. Emmanuel Tostao, 18. Salim Kinje Khamis, 10. Charles Okwemba (captain), 11. Mike Baraza Reserves - 34. Abel Omuhaya, Gk; 6. Nicholas Muyoti, 26. Robert Syongoh, 30. Samuel “Misse” Mwangi, 8. Laurent Tumba, 14. Silas Aluvisia, 7. Brian Masiolo
Coach – Jan Koops [The Netherlands]

SOFAPAKA - 39. Duncan Ochieng’: 8. Dodo Kayombo, 7. Thomas Wanyama, 25. Musa Mudde, 5. Edgar “Fighter” Ochieng’, 11. Anthony Kimani, 9. Bob Mugalia, 21. John Njoroge, 22. Heretier Luvualu, 23. Titus Mulama (captain), 19. John Onami Reserves - 28. Pascal Penda, Gk; 15. Kilonzo Tumba, 10. Patrick Kagogo, 17. Eli Asieche, 30. Joseph Nyaga, 16. Collins Omogo, 18. Francis Ouma
Coach - Francis Kimanzi
Referee - Isaac Ochieng’ Assistant ref - David Otianga Asst ref - Oliver Ouma Reserve ref - Haji Adede Match commissioner - Daniel Githaka

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Post Match: Rangers (A)

Leopards drew 0-0 with Rangers.

The report by Dennis Machio of MichezoAfrika states:-

A missed penalty by Rangers Captain and misfiring by AFC Leopards striking force ensured the two KPL teams share spoils in an entertaining match played on Friday evening at Nyayo stadium and graced by Prime Minister Raila Odinga who joined the fans at the start of the second half.

AFC Leopards fired the first salvo from a close range shot by Jimmy Bageya in the 7th minute but former Ingwe custodian Lawrence Webo denied the Ugandan an early goal. Rangers replied to the early attacks in minute 20 through a curled free kick shot from Juma Abdalla but AFC Leopards second choice keeper Patrick Matasi proved his pedigree with a fine save.Matasi a former West Sugar goalkeeper got his first test of the premier league after AFC Leopards’ first choice goalkeeper Barnabas Tiema pulled an injury before the match.

Jimmy Bageya went close again in the 31st minute following a good set up by Mike Baraza.Okwemba then presented Bageya with a good through ball past the goal line but the short Ugandan couldn’t connect to the ball.

Former Tusker man ,Oscar Kadenge presented Charles Okwemba with a tap in opportunity in the 38th minute but the former Rangers man misfired to send both teams to the break still deadlocked at 0-0.

After the break, AFC came back firing from all cylinders with Jimmy Bageya squandering the first second half chance when his left foot let him down and was unable to shoot. Mike Baraza tried a follow up but his shot went up past a comfortable Webo who is back in action after an injury lay off.

Rangers suffered a set back after Abbas Akiyemi got injured after a tussle inside the box and had to be substituted with Noah Misiko.Misiko almost made an immediate impact but AFC defense outwitted him.

On fire AFC Leopards continued pressing hard with Oscar Kadenge trying a long shot that keeper Webo parried out for a corner in the 71st.The corner missed the target much to the relief of rangers who were facing marauding attacks minute after minute.

Dutchman Jans Koops threw in Samuel "Misee" Mwangi in place of Kinje in the 76th minute to bolster his midfield. Rangers Coach David Ouma replied immediately by bringing in Jeff Odongo for Edwin Mwaura.

Rangers’ well timed attacks presented a God sent opportunity for the cash strapped team to notch what would have been a winner after Dan Kago was brought down by Martin Imbalambala inside the box with ten minutes remaining. Center referee James Kagara pointed to the penalty spot. Captain Pascal took the spot kick but the post denied him despite beating keeper Patrick Matasi.

The miss seemed to reenergize the partisan AFC Leopards crowd who urged their team on. Rangers got another set back after Tshiyoyo was shown a red card following a second yellow card with three minutes to the end of normal regulation time.

AFC Leopards almost grabbed a late goal deep into injury time but the heavens seemed numb to their prayers after several misses to end the match barren.

In the post match interview, Rangers Coach David Ouma said "Am happy with the performance of my players. We just needed one opportunity to utilize it and kill the game".

AFC Leopards coach Jan Koops was happy that his team "played football" in both halves.

KPL website had the story

FOUR minutes into added time, Mike Baraza would have won this one for AFC Leopards. But when he got into the six-yard box on the left flank, his squared ball going off the palms of Rangers’ goalie, Lawrence Webo, rolled across the face of goal but none of the three on rushing Leopards’ men reached it to tap into the net.

This concluded the tale of the night for Leopards in Friday’s Kenyan Premier League action under the National Stadium floodlights before SuperSport’s “live” cameras -- dominant over Rangers, so many scoring chances and lucky not to have come out with naught from the skirmishes.

Indeed Leopards were let off the hook when Pascal Ochieng’s 80th minute penalty kick boomed back into play off the cross bar. Danson Kago had had his legs cut off from inside the box by a desperate Martin Imbalambala for referee James Kagera to award Rangers the penalty. It was mighty luck for Leopards when Ochieng’, one of the surest takers in the land, made the rare miss.

Leopards had no problem building up their attacks from midfield and taking pot shots at Webo throughout the night. But Jimmy Bageya, at the top of the strike force, looked all wasteful and perhaps selfish. Baraza, Leopards’ skipper Charles Okwemba and Oscar Kadenge spent the whole evening with splendid supply to the tempestuous little Ugandan but without fruitful results.

The earned point helped Rangers to resume leadership of the table, at 34 points each swapping places with second-placed Tusker because of a better goal difference. Leopards moved to 10th [23 points] at the expense of Mathare United who vacated the position to drop down one.

Both teams had announced minimal changes from their previous fixtures but Leopards where forced into further adjustment when ‘keeper Barnabas Tiema sprained his thumb during warm-up and the largely untested Patrick Matasi had to step in.

Beaten 3-1 previous time out by Gor Mahia, Leopards would go in without defender John Amboko, club captain and defensive midfielder Nicholas Muyoti and attacker Francis Chinjili. Instead Martin Imbalambala, Salim Khamis and Oscar Kedenge made starts.

Rangers, for once, would not have the luxury of confidence like in so many of their previous forays which saw them stay in the hunt of the top spot. Their previous time out they could only manage a 1-1 draw with lowly Nairobi City Stars.

They were always headed for a struggle after injuries to dependable men such as Edward Kauka, Aggrey Ongoli, Benedict Oduor and Jaffar Gichuki who were to be sorely missed; starts being handed to Michael Kamadi and Tafadzwa Dondo.

Mulumba Tshiyoyo the new Congolese import on the Rangers’ side was hard working but his second yellow card for a foul in the 89th minute took him out of play in the final six minutes.

RANGERS - 16. Lawrence Webo: 23. Hashim Mukwana, 6. Abdalla Juma, 12. Mulumba Tshiyoyo, 24. Pascal Ochieng’ (captain), 28. Michael Kamadi, 14. Danson Kago, 5. Jacob Opere, 7. Edwin Mwaura (2. Jeff Odongo, 60’), 50. Tafadzwa Dondo (8. Oscar Olwith, 56’), 10. Abbas Akinyemi (17. Noah Misiko, 62’)

Reserves - 34. Victor Omondi, GK; 15. Benedict Oduor, 22. Joshua Okeyo, 30. Nicholas Auma,
Coach - David Ouma

AFC LEOPARDS - 1. Patrick Matasi: 5. Edwin Baraza, 24. Collins Kisuya, 4. Martin Imbalambala, 17. Jonas Nahimana, 22. Bernard Mang’oli, 27. Oscar Kadenge (14. Silas Aluvisia, 85’), 10. Charles Okwemba (captain), 11. Mike Baraza, 18. Salim Khamis (30. Samuel Mwangi, 76’), 50. Jimmy Bagaye

Reserves - 6. Nicholas Muyoti, 13. Edgar Waudo,, 7. Brian Masiolo, 21. Emmanuel Tostao
Coach – Jan Koops [The Netherlands]

Referee - James Kagera [Thika]
Assistant ref - Maryanne Njoroge [Kikuyu]
Asst ref - Jane Cherono [Nairobi]
Reserve ref - Brasan Mamati [Nairobi]
Match commissioner - Evans Mwachia [Mombasa]

3Gor Mahia189721710734
4Ulinzi Stars189632012833
6Karuturi Sports198561212029
7Chemelil Sugar197751714328
9Western Stima197571011-126
10Thika United197392226-424
11Mathare United195861716123
12AFC Leopards1972101722-523
13Sony Sugar185491221-919
14City Stars1936101019-915
16Congo United1935111230-1814