Legends urge Gor Mahia players to return the club back to the summit

From left- Gor Mahia FC legends Maurice Onyango 'Aka Oletunda', Tobias Ochola 'Jua Kali', Mike Otieno 'Kwasakwasa' and George Sunguti 'OCPD' [Jonah Onyango, Standard]

Gor Mahia FC legends have urged the current players to return the club back to winning ways.

The legends are concerned after the 19-times Kenyan Premier League (KPL) side ended the recently concluded national league in third place on 58 points behind champions Tusker FC and second placed Kakamega Homeboyz FC who finished on 66 points apiece.

The former players were speaking in Nairobi on Tuesday after the team was supported with KSh70 million by the newest gaming firm Betafriq ahead of the new KPL season.

"We know you had a rough season, we hope that you will change the narrative in the coming one. We want to see you at the summit of the league," Tobias 'Juakali' Ocholla told the players.

The former Harambee Stars defender had a 13-year stint with Gor, winning the prestigious Mandela Cup with unbeaten run in 1987.

He also won three national titles (KPL) with the side during his stint with Gor.

Ocholla has been part of the contingent who have been scouting for new recruits for the club.

He recently bagged the All Africa Universities football title with Kenyatta University, punching the ticket to the World Universities Games to be held in China next year in October.

George Sunguti, who manned the defence both for Gor and AFC Leopards SC in his hey-days, told Gor players to work extremely hard to maintain their former top place in the KPL charts in the coming season.

"Kindly remember that when you are playing, you are not doing it for the officials, you are securing your future," Sunguti said.

Sunguti's sentiments were echoed by another legend, Morris Ole Tunda, who advised the players to be passionate about the club.

"Gor is a team and a half, have the club closely at heart, that is the only way you will feel your stay in the team.

"And be reminded that when you are playing for Gor, you are not doing it for the technical bench but for your families," Ole Tunda underscored.

"In our times, we used to board aircrafts like matatus, we were always travelling, criss-crossing Africa. Return the club back to that busy schedule," Ole Tunda said.

Gor Mahia FC Chairman Ambrose Rachier and Gor Mahia fan number 1 Jaro Soja after receiving club sponsorship of Sh70 million from gaming firm Betafriq ahead of the new Kenya Premier League season. [Jonah Onyango, Standard]

Ole Tunda joined Gor in 1971 and played for the Kenyan giants for 13 years.

His greatest moment came in 1975 when he won the national title with the club unbeaten.

Former Harambee Stars striker Mike Otieno told the players to be self-inspired, reiterating that they ought to play for the badge and not for the allowances.

"Gor is a giant in Africa, kindly return it back to its 'status quo'.

"When you are on the field, die for it.

"Put the club's interest first," Otieno underlined.

Otieno first played for Gor at 19 years, winning two national titles with the side.

He had his first call up to the national team at 24, representing Kenya in the African Cup of Nations.

Gor Mahia captain Philllemon Omondi assured that they will right all the wrongs they experienced last season to return confidence to their legion of fans.

"We were initially written off at the start of the season but we waded through the waters to finish in top three, the season was a real challenge," assistant captain Samuel Onyango echoed.

Gor Mahia chairman Ambrose Rachier explained the club's woes last season saying they did not perform well since the side has been banned from signing new players by world football governing body Fifa.

"We had no option but to promote our junior players to the senior team," said Rachier, who added that the Covid-19 pandemic was another drawback to the club.

Rachier assured the team will secure a new coach by end of August following the recent exit of their German tactician Andreas Spiers whose contract expired.

Betafriq General Manager Craig Oyugi said they are proud to be associated with Gor which is a big brand nationally.

He promised to help the African giants nurture upcoming talents in their academy.

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