Kenya’s Gor Mahia look to claim major scalp

Kenya’s Gor Mahia look to claim major scalp
USM Alger player Darfalou Oussama (L) fights for the ball with Zamalek Maroof Yusuf (R) during the 2017 CAF Champions League game between USM Alger and Zamalek at Stade 5 Juillet 1962 in Algiers, Algeria on 21 June 2017 © BackpagePix

by Graeme Jackson

Thursday Jan 31, 2019. 15:00

Gor Mahia will look to claim a major scalp at the start of their CAF Confederation Cup Group D campaign when they host Zamalek in Nairobi on Sunday. The match is slated for the Moi International Sports Centre, kick-off at 15h00 CAT.

Mahia claimed their place in the group stage of the second-tier continental competition after overcoming Cameroon’s New Star de Douala 2-1 on aggregate in the playoff round.

The Kenyans ‘dropped’ into the Confederation Cup after succumbing to Nigeria’s Lobi Stars only on the away goals in the top-tier CAF Champions League.

Having come so close to reaching the group phase of the premier competition, K’Ogalo and coach Hassan Oktay will be determined to put on a strong showing in the Confed Cup.

However, Oktay comes into the match under major pressure after his side’s slow start to the Kenya Premier League.

Zamalek, meanwhile, claimed their Group D berth after overcoming AS Coton Tchad (7-2 on aggregate) and Morocco’s IR Tanger (3-1 on aggregate) in the first and playoff rounds respectively.

The White Knights have been in fine form both in the Confed Cup and domestic football, where they enjoy a strong position atop the Egyptian Premier League table.

Zamalek coach Christian Gross will hope his side can find top gear for this clash away to Mahia and put them in a strong position ahead of successive home matches later in February.

The other Group D game sees Algeria’s Hussein Dey host Angola’s Petro Atletico later the same evening in Algiers, with kick-off at 21h00 CAT.

Mozambican referee Celso Alvacao will take charge of the match in Nairobi.

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