‘Relegetaion? What relegation?’ – resurgent Mathare United asks after felling another giant in 2 weeks
Mathare United’s resurgence in the 2022/2023 Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Premier League is noticeable and the team can no longer entertain talks of an imminent relegation particularly after adding AFC Leopards in the list of the giants they have slayed since the season began.
Barely two weeks after bruising the egos of the table-topping Gor Mahia by beating them a 2-1 defeat in Kasarani, Mathare proved that the result was not a fluke after they stopped AFC Leopards 1-0 in the same setting last Sunday.
“The league may be far from over, but if the two results do not serve as a warning to the rest of Mathare’s opponents in the remainder of the season, what will?” posed the team’s trainer Samuel Koko.
At some stage, Mathare, who were belatedly reinstated in the league, were deep in the mire with seemingly little hope of getting out before they produced a magical charm much to the reverence of their persevering fans.
“I’m glad that the fans have been with us through thick and thin. The desired results were always going to come and thankfully, they did. I think it’s just a matter of time when we scale the ladder to be among the top ten teams in the league,” offered Koko. The tactician’s input is laudable in that he doubles up as the team’s goalkeeper’s trainer but cannot mind being contracted as the official of the team which sits in the fourteenth position in the chart after having made a major leap from the basement.
“If I’m appointed, why not take up the chance?, catechized Koko, adding that for now, his focus is to lead Mathare into registering more wins to further out of the relegation.
“We beat Wazito, Gor and now Leopards but we shall not rest. The league is a marathon but my message at this point is to urge sponsors to come on board since we are increasingly proving ourselves. Let’s keep working hard and believing,” he added.
In the meantime, three teams which are below Mathare in the pecking order including FC Talanta, Nairobi City Stars, Wazito and Vihiga Bullets should better pull up their socks in their remaining fixtures lest they face the axe at the end of the season.
City Stars, whose fixture against Sofapaka was infiltrated by match-fixing claims, have now won in their last seven matches which does not paint a good picture for a team that would wish to remain in the top league.
Meanwhile, Gor Mahia cemented their lead following a 1-0 victory over Bidco although they paid for the success after their top striker Benson Omala was stretched off the field with an injury.
Gor will be hoping to continue with the purple patch to ward off the challenge of KCB and Nzoia Sugar who are breathing at their necks.