Gor Mahia boss Frank Nuttall picked a lot of positives from his side’s 1-0 defeat to Bandari FC in the DSTV Super Cup on Saturday (Feb. 6).
The Scotsman had the worst preparation possible ahead of the clash after he was sacked two days to the match, only to be reinstated a day later after the club bowed to fans’ pressure.
In a game of two halves, Kogalo were decadent in front of goal during the first half which they bossed with Bandari ‘keeper Wilson Obungu producing a man-of-the-match performance.
However, the reigning league champions found themselves chasing the game with 10-men after defender Harun Shakava was sent for early showers after delivering a high boot challenge on Dan Sserunkuma and the hosts capitalized with Antony Akumu netting the solitary goal in the 68th minute.
The defeat saw Nuttall lose his first competitive match (in normal time) in the domestic league since October 26 2014 but the 47-year-old wasn’t too downbeat about it.
“It was the first competitive match of the season and that made things tricky but you could see we put them on the back foot until Shakava’s dismissal,” Nuttall reacted after the match.
Nuttall gave starting berths to forward Jacob Keli and defender Luke Ochieng’, both acquired during the off-season transfer window, and the duo left the manager impressed despite the flailing on either man’s workstation.
“Both players are still getting their fitness levels up there but they worked hard alongside other members of the team,” Nutall said.
“Luke was forced to slot into a different position after Shakava’s red card and he did well and Keli got himself into good positions
“We know we set the bar high last season and these new players will be crucial but the early signs are encouraging.”
Kogalo host Madagscan outfit, CNaPS in the preliminary round of the CAF Champions League this Saturday (Feb. 13) in Nairobi. The two sides met at the same stage last season, the tie ending in a 3-3 aggregate after Gor Mahia won the first leg 1-0 but lost the return leg 3-2 to advance on away goals.
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