The 25th week of the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) started unusually earlier with one match staged on Friday – the Tusker versus Muhoroni Youth clash which ended 2 – 1 in favor of Tusker, seeing the brewers complete a double over the visitors and also maintaining their leadership of the standings.
After that match, seven more are lined up, spread across Saturday and Sunday; here’s the preview for the weekend action.
Chemelil Sugar vs Ulinzi Stars (Chemelil Sugar Sports Complex, 2pm)
Ulinzi managed a 2-1 win over Chemelil in the first leg but they could find this meeting a more difficult affair owing to the sugar millers impressive recent run.
League joint top scorer Mark Makwatta on 12 goals will be keen to break his five-match silence on the scorers’ list with a strike on Saturday.
Chemelil’s David Ojuang picked up a fifth yellow card of the season on September 10 against Gor Mahia and is therefore suspended for this match.
Mohammed “Rio” Hassan of Ulinzi is also suspended after picking a red card in their September 14 clash against Gor Mahia.
Bandari vs City Stars (Mbaraki Sports Club, 3pm)
This will be a key clash for rock bottom-placed City Stars whose chances of surviving relegation are fading with each passing week.
They managed a 2-2 draw against Bandari in the first leg tie in Nairobi and will be under no illusion of what to expect at the coast side’s fortress of Mbaraki.
The dockers silenced AFC Leopards 2-1 at the same venue two weeks back and will feel struggling City Stars are here for the picking.
Bandari midfielder Musa Mudde will miss this match and the next for collecting his fifth yellow card as well as a red card during the Leopards game.
Kakamega Homeboyz vs Ushuru (Mumias Sugar Sport Complex, 3pm)
Tireless Kakamega Homeboyz defender Charles Momanyi has returned to club after honouring his first national team call up, and talk is that he will be conferred the captain’s armband for the remainder of the season.
Momanyi will be tasked with keeping the likes of lively Heritier Luvualu and Roosevelt Blatty of Ushuru silent as
Homeboyz seek to avenge the 1-0 defeat they suffered against the tax men in the first leg.
Ushuru have not won a match in their last eight matches, certainly an ignominious record they will want to snap.
AFC Leopards vs Western Stima (Nyayo Stadium, 3pm)
Western Stima are currently enjoying an upturn in form and coach Henry Omino has promised to inflict further pain on the already fraught AFC Leopards.
Stima have beaten Ingwe twice already this season (2-1 in the first leg and 3-0 in the GOtv Shield), and the power men have vowed to do it again on Sunday. They will certainly start the match as clear favourites.
“Our painful loss to KCB (in the GOtv Shield quarter-finals) means our next opponent who is AFC leopards will pay the price,” a menacing statement on Stima’s Facebook page read.
Leopards striker Allan Katerrega will miss this match for having accumulated five yellow cards, meaning that club lead scorer Kepha Aswani and Paul Kiongera could pair up as the strike options for Ingwe.
Mathare United vs Posta Rangers (Nyayo Stadium, 2pm)
After stumbling to 2-1 loss to Sony Sugar in their previous match, title-chasing Mathare United will be looking to keep pace with the table leaders as they welcome Posta Rangers.
This will be another meeting of Mathare’s Francis Kimanzi and Zedekiah “Zico” Otieno, who are former Harambee Stars head coaches, who once sat on the same national bench with the former in charge and the latter his under study.
Thika United vs SonySugar (Thika Stadium, 3pm)
Ray Omondi, the striker who showed so much promise for Thika United last season, has taken a short break from football and will almost certainly be out for the rest of the season.
The James Nandwa-coached Thika were beaten 5-0 by Tusker in a friendly match. Coupled with their recent run of four winless games they will indeed be very vulnerable hosts.
Sony Sugar will have scented blood. They beat Mathare United 2-1 in their last match and they will be looking to complete a double against Thika whom they defeated in the first leg.
Thika captain Dennis Odhiambo will serve the second of his two-match ban this weekend.
Sofapaka vs Gor Mahia (Nyayo Stadium, 4.15pm)
Defending champions Gor Mahia are looking to get themselves to the top of the league table and will want to collect all three points from a team that has spectacularly capitulated this season.
Godfrey Walusimbi, who suffered injury after falling off a motorcycle two months ago, is fit again and available to start for K’Ogalo in this match as they seek to extended their winning streak.
Sofapaka midfielder Eric Ochieng will face his former employers having left Gor in June this season, while K’Ogalo’s Enock Agwanda will also be facing the team that gave him the opportunity to develop as a player.
Gor won the first leg 2-0 and with their new found form, the Green Army will be expecting nothing other than a repeat performance, or even better.