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Omala’s double lifts Gor Mahia past AFC Leopards in Mashemeji Derby

Saturday, October 7th, 2023 18:17 | By
Gor Mahia players celebrate a goal. PHOTO/Gor Mahia/Facebook
Gor Mahia players celebrate a goal. PHOTO/Gor Mahia/Facebook

Gor Mahia bounced back to winning ways with a convincing 2-0 victory over AFC Leopards in the Mashemeji Derby, held at Moi International Stadium on Saturday.

Gor entered the match sitting in second place in the league standings with nine points, comprising two wins and three draws.

Gor Mahia's draw

They had been held to draws in their last two matches and were eager to return to their winning form. They managed to do just that with goals in both halves.

Gor Mahia’s Benson Omala striker Benson Omala in a league action. PHOTO/Benson Omala/Facebook
Gor Mahia’s Benson Omala striker Benson Omala in a league action. PHOTO/Benson Omala/Facebook

On the other hand, AFC Leopards faced this derby after a challenging start to the season, remaining winless with four draws and one defeat, accumulating only four points.

Gor Mahia had an early opportunity to take the lead when Kaycie Odhiambo made an error and Austin Odhiambo's powerful curled shot was saved by Lewis Opiyo.

AFC Leopards responded with Victor Otieno's strike, which forced a save from Kevin Omondi, resulting in a corner. As the hunt for a goal continued, AFC Leopards started to press forward in numbers.

Gor Mahia managed to dispossess AFC Leopards and launched a quick counter-attack. A well-calculated pass from Austin Odhiambo found the league's leading scorer, Benson Omala, who slotted it past the oncoming Leopards' keeper for a 1-0 lead, sparking chants of joy from the Gor Mahia fans.

In the 32nd minute, a long-range delivery was missed by Brian Yakhama and went on to trouble Gor's keeper. Fortunately for Gor Mahia, the ball did not find its way into the net. Five minutes later, Vincent Mahiga's cross once again troubled Omondi, who spilt the ball but was lucky that it did not cross the line.

In the second half, AFC Leopards continued to press for an equalizer but struggled to create clear-cut chances.

Gor Mahia strike again

Gor Mahia struck again in the 56th minute when Patrick Sibomana's low pass beat Opiyo, allowing Omala to tap the ball into an empty net, marking his sixth goal in six matches this season.

Gor Mahia's Kevin Simiyu and Benson Omala celebrate a goal against Ulinzi Stars in a Premier League match. PHOTO/(@OfficialGMFC)/Gor Mahia/Twitter
Gor Mahia's Kevin Simiyu and Benson Omala celebrate a goal against Ulinzi Stars in a Premier League match. PHOTO/Gor Mahia/ (@OfficialGMFC)/Twitter

Omala had a chance to complete his hat-trick moments later, but Opiyo denied him. In the dying minutes of the game, Omala was set up for a third goal, but he couldn't beat Opiyo this time. He appealed for a penalty, but the referee awarded a corner instead.

AFC Leopards' late freekick attempt was save by Omondi as they continued to struggle for goals this season.

With the win, Gor Mahia are tied on 12 points with Murang'a seal while Leopards have dropped into the relegation zone.

Gor Mahia FC squad: 35 Omondi Kevin, 88 Onyango Ronney, 2 Ochieng Geofrey (C), 14 Onyango Kenedy, 6 Emery Bayisenge, 3 Simiyu Kevin, 5 Mugisha Rogers, 24 Ochieng Lawrence, 22 Omalla Benson, 10 Austin Odhiambo, 27 Patrick Sibomana

Substitutions Caleb, Ochuoga. Alvin, Bryson, Joshua, Wendo, Alpha, Rodgers, Christopher

AFC Leopards squad:

32 Opiyo Levis 4.Randi Bakari 22 Mahiga Vincent 12 Odhiambo Kaycie 2 Emmanuel Lwangu 6 Oundo Musa 10 Nyakeya Cliff, 18.Kweyu Munyendo, 9' Yakhama Brian, 50, Otieno Victor, 23 Miheso Clifton

Katasi, Were, Wanyama Shichenje, Maxwell, She Beja, Jaffari, Kimani

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