Oktay pokes Leopards’ eyes as Mbungo admits to Ingwe’s awful defending

By Rodgers Eshitemi: Tuesday, May 21st 2019 at 00:10 GMT +3 | Football
Gor Mahia Coach Hassan Oktay in their KPL match against AFC Leopards at Kasarani stadium. May 19, 2019. Gor won 3-1. [Jonah Onyango, Standard]

Gor Mahia coach Hassan Oktay has taken a swipe at AFC Leopards’ poor quality after guiding the run-away Sportpesa Premier League leaders to a convincing 3-1 Mashemeji derby victory at Kasarani Stadium on Sunday.

Oktay, whose team (69) is just two points away from lifting their third and 18th unprecedented title, claims Leopards’ lack of quality have turned the derby into an ‘average’ match.

K’Ogalo brutally exposed their eternal rivals’ defensive shortcomings courtesy of Nicholas Kipkirui’s brace and Jacques Tuyisenge strike before Vincent Oburu pulled a goal back for Ingwe.

Just like many fans, Oktay had expected Leopards to give his side a run for its money after impressive buys in the offseason.

But that never came to pass as the Green Army comfortably extended their derby dominance with the result throwing Leopards’ debilitating defensive issues into sharp focus.

Gor Mahia were more clinical, demonstrating the fearsome traits that have made them continue ruling the Kenyan football.

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“The scoreline was not a true reflection of the match because we dominated the game and created numerous chances. I think we played much better than the first derby and the result would have been either 6-1 or 5-1,” said Oktay.

“But honestly speaking it didn’t look like a derby, just the crowd nothing else. I always have full respect for our opponents, but today AFC Leopards didn’t give us any challenge.

“I was expecting them to give us a tough game, unfortunately, they didn’t. They’ve made derbies look so ordinary.”

Tiring of media questions about the inevitable title celebrations, the Turkish-Cypriot said he is focused on winning all their remaining three matches, starting with tomorrow’s encounter against relegation-threatened Vihiga United in Machakos.

“I don’t know about the title because I don’t check the table standings. My focus is on winning all our remaining three matches. We will talk about the title after the last game,” said Oktay.

“The derby victory is a huge motivation ahead of our next game against Vihiga United. Of course, we’ve got back our rhythm. That’s a great response from the Nzoia Sugar defeat.”

While Oktay was heaping praise on his players, Cassa Mbungo was bemoaning how AFC Leopards gifted the champions-elect goals.

“It was a very disappointing result caused by some individual errors. But I think we will have a much different team with hopes of an improved result next season,” said Mbungo.

“We came into this match expecting a positive result, but unfortunately we committed very costly errors at the back. I think we should have played to the whistle for the second goal.”