Gor Mahia interim coach, Frank Ouna, is optimistic that his side’s fortunes will turn around after a difficult start to the 2016 Kenyan Premier League campaign.
Ouna finds himself in a familiar position of being a caretaker manager, a role he has filled before as the managerial turnaround at Gor Mahia persists.
The resignation of Frank Nuttall after the Mashemeji Derby defeat to AFC Leopards last weekend left the managerial seat vacant with Brazilian José Marcelo Ferreira, alias Ze Maria, set to take over once he arrives in the country.
Until then, Ouna will be the main man in the dugout for Kogalo, a position he says he would have wished to hold on to for a long time.
Best man for the job
He said, “I received a message from Nuttall where he wished the team the best while also saying that I am best placed to take the team forward. I have not received any communiqué from the (Gor Mahia) office though so I don’t know how things will turn out.”
Ouna went on to dispel widespread reports of incessant rifts in the dressing room that might have led to Nuttall’s departure, saying players’ behaviours have ‘always been OK.’
“Nuttall’s exit had nothing to do with the dressing room but rather, greener pastures. Zamalek are obviously a bigger club than Gor Mahia so am sure had the Egyptian club come calling even if we were winning, he would have still gone since as a coach you always want to work at the highest level.”
Nuttall helped Gor Mahia win back-to-back league titles, with the club finishing the whole of last season unbeaten. It is such exploits that endeared the sports scientist to the fans who last month forced the club to rescind a decision to sack him, but Ouna says it wasn’t anything close to being a one man job.
“Nuttall was very good, I can’t deny that. But even he would be frank enough to tell you how the technical team and players helped him do the job as well as it turned out to be.
“I think our local fans always rate foreign coaches highly which is very unfortunate. It’s not that easy that you normally come from abroad and get things ticking. There are those who lay a foundation but never get the credit,” he concluded.
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