Kenyan champions Gor Mahia will return home from their 2015 Cecafa Kagame Cup trip a disappointed lot after they failed on the last hurdle with a 2-0 loss to Azam in the final.
It was a tear-jerking defeat for the five-time champions who went into the match with an equal chance of winning it. However at the final whistle, the defeat felt like the right result given how the team performed against the Tanzanians who won their maiden title. There was implosion among some players while for once, Frank Nuttall seemed beaten on the tactical bout with his counterpart Stewart Hall.
Here’s our Player Ratings for the Kogalo players who played in the finale. Do you agree? Drop your opinions in the comments section under the article.
Boniface Oluoch – 4.5
The goalkeeper couldn’t be faulted for the opening goal as he was left exposed by his defence. However, he has to take full blame for the second goal as he miscalculated the flight of Kipre Tchetche’s free-kick, embarrassing himself in the process. Was lucky not to receive a red card after deliberately kicking at an Azam player after the goal. Got a consolation for his effort throughout the tournament with the golden glove award.
Abouba Sibomana – 5.0
Was partly culpable for the opening goal as he, alongside Eric Ochieng, allowed Tchetche to have a free run on the left channel before delivering the cross for John Bocco to net the opener. Always looked uncomfortable when being attacked but kept his cool. Booked in the second half.
Harun Shakava – 6.0
There are still question marks about his central defensive partnership with Musa Mohammed. The duo failed to get tight with Bocco despite danger lurking. He played as a forward later on in the match and looked hungry to get at least a consolation goal for his side who struggled to penetrate the Azam wall guarded by Pascal Wawa and co.
Musa Mohammed – 5.0
The captain had a good campaign prior to the final where he failed to inspire his team to success. He should have reigned over a few of his teammates who were showing gross indiscipline as the game wore on.
Karim Nizigiyimana – 6.0
The ‘King of assists’ didn’t have a fruitful day as he had during the preliminary stages. Floated in a few crosses but his forwards were put in the back pocket by the big Azam center-halves. Leaves the tournament as arguably the best right-back of all the teams who took part.
Khalid Aucho – 3.5
He should have been sent off in the 19th minute after a nasty and intentional elbow on Tchetche and lived on the edge throughout the match. He looked overwhelmed in the midfield in the absence of injured Collins ‘Gattuso’ Okoth. Conceded the foul that led to the second goal and a booking as well. A final to forget for the Ugandan.
Eric Ochieng – 4.0
Gave the ball away then decided not to track Tchetche as the Ivorian had a free run on the left to set up the opener. Was hauled off just after hour mark, Ali Abondo coming on.
Innocent Wafula – 5.5
The youngster was unplayable in the 3-1 win over Al Khartoum in the semis. Boss Frank Nuttall decided to give him another go right from the off but the decision somehow backfired as he looked tired. Was bullied off the ball time and again by his more powerful markers and spurned a few half chances. Withdrawn for Enock Agwanda in the 74th minute.
Godfrey Walusimbi – 6.0
‘Jaja’ was the more creative of Gor Mahia’s attacking line. His occasional inter-play with Sibomana on the left channel had Azam wallowing in sixes and sevens. He should have scored at the stroke of half time after Azam keeper Aishi Manula pushed Wafula’s stinging shot into his path but the Ugandan failed to connect in time.
Meddie Kagere – 6.0
Held the ball up well but on the wrong end of the pitch as he was mostly pushed to the by line. He mustered his first effort at the hour mark after being teed up by Olunga but his shot was blocked. He then returned the favor to Olunga with a lovely flick in the 75th minute but the lanky forward shot wide. A minute later, he was withdrawn from action with George ‘Blackberry’ Odhiambo assuming the role.
Michael Olunga – 6.0
The golden boot winner endured a frustrating afternoon under the challenge of more experienced and more powerful markers. He was left to feed on scraps as service to him was limited and could only watch as his defence crumbled behind him. A brilliant show altogether though and could have won the MVP award had Kogalo lifted the title.
Ali Abondo, Enoch Agwanda, George Odhiambo – The trio failed to add spark into the match as they all faded into the action. Agwanda’s long throw-ins found wrong heads inside the penalty area while Abondo and Odhiambo were hardly noticeable.
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