What you need to know:
- Gor Mahia face a more daunting task of overturning a 4-1 deficit from the first leg when they welcome USM Alger of Algeria at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani at 4pm.
- Bandari on the other hand take a 2-0 first leg advantage to the hostile north Africa zone against Tunisia's US Ben Guerdane
Kenya's representatives in the Caf club competitions Gor Mahia and Bandari face a date with destiny Sunday afternoon when they take on to their respective opponents in the return leg ties.
Gor Mahia face a more daunting task of overturning a 4-1 deficit from the first leg when they welcome USM Alger of Algeria at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani at 4pm with a place in the lucrative Caf Champions League group stage the reward for the aggregate winner.
Bandari on the other hand take a 2-0 first leg advantage to the hostile north Africa zone against Tunisia's US Ben Guerdane at the Stade de Ben Guerdane from 5:30 pm with a place in the Confederation Cup playoff at stake.
Teams that fail to make it to the Caf Champions League group stages will also drop to the Confederation Cup playoffs where the aggregate winners will make it to the group stage of the secondary continental club competition.
Despite the deep hole K’Ogalo find themselves in, coach Steven Polack remains optimistic his side will get the job done.
“We have to believe that it is possible otherwise there’s no need to play football. We have watched a few videos from the first leg match and we know what we need to do. Mistakes happen in football but it is how you react after falling down that really matters,” Polack told Nation Sport.
Captain Kenneth Muguna has called on the Green Army to turn out in large numbers to push the team.
“We have prepared well for the match and everyone is in a positive mood heading into the match. We have to defend very well and avoid conceding. We can score goals upfront,” said Muguna.
A 3-0 win for Gor Mahia will see them through to the group stage. They however have just fifteen players to choose from for their starting squad this afternoon and will miss the services of forward Samuel Onyango who is down with flu.
The financially-crippled Kenyan champions were boosted with a Sh1 million donation from Keroche Breweries yesterday to cater for match logistics.
The Algerian champions meanwhile arrived in the country on Friday morning and trained at Kasarani yesterday afternoon.
Bandari have one foot inside the group stage of the Caf Confederation Cup already after beating US Ben Guerdane 2-0 at home but the team’s coach Bernard Mwalala is wary of the threat that the Tunisians pose.
‘’We should not even think of celebrating at the moment – we are playing away against a very tactical side and we have to be very careful and concentrate for the entire match," Mwalala said.
"The strategy is very clear, we have to defend well and try to get a goal but the main objective is to defend our lead. If we can manage to contain them in the first half then I think the match will be on our side.”
The team arrived in Tunisia on Thursday and held their first training at the Zarzis Old Stadium in Chammakh on Friday evening and their final session at the match venue yesterday. “The good thing about the weather here is it’s the same with Mombasa where we are based. Everyone is fit and raring to go.”
Gor Mahia probable starting XI against USM Alger: David Mapigano (GK), Geoffrey Ochieng, Wellington Ochieng, Joash Onyango, Charles Momanyi, Tobias Otieno, Kenneth Muguna, Boniface Omondi, Dickson Ambundo, Lawrence Juma and Nicholas Kipkirui.
Bandari probable starting XI against US Ben Guerdane: Michael Wanyika (GK), Nicholas Meja, Fred Nkata, Brian Otieno, Felly Mulumba, Collins Agade, Cliff Kasuti, Danson Namasaka, Yema Mwama, William Wadri and Abdalla Hassan.