Gor Mahia settle on Brazilian Ze Maria after Frank Nuttall's exit

Brazilian coach, José Marcelo Ferreira “Ze Maria” is expected in the country Thursday evening ahead of his unveiling on Friday to take over the mantle at Gor Mahia.

Wednesday March 9 2016

Gor Mahia fans during their SportPesa Premier League match against AFC Leopards at Safaricom Stadium in Kasarani on March 6, 2016. PHOTO | MARTIN MUKANGU |

Gor Mahia fans during their SportPesa Premier League match against AFC Leopards at Safaricom Stadium in Kasarani on March 6, 2016. PHOTO | MARTIN MUKANGU |  AFP

By ISAAC SWILA
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Brazilian coach, José Marcelo Ferreira “Ze Maria” is expected in the country Thursday evening ahead of his unveiling on Friday to take over the mantle at Gor Mahia.

K’Ogalo’s leadership settled on the 42-year-old former Brazil national team right-back to steady ship following the dramatic exit of Scotsman Frank Nuttall, who resigned on Tuesday.

In his resignation letter delivered to club boss Ambrose Rachier on Tuesday, Nuttall cited the failure by the club to honour its contractual obligations.

“I have received Nuttall’s resignation letter which was hand delivered to me and he says the environment had made it impossible for him to continue working,” Rachier said on Tuesday.

(READ: I’m happy he’s gone: Rachier)

And Daily Nation Sport has gathered that as part of the deal, Ze Maria will come along with his fitness coach, whose nationality is still unknown.

The agreement, Daily Nation Sport understands, is meant to give Ze Maria “a strong man” in the backroom who can get the boys to the optimum fitness levels required as he bids to achieve success.

Current club assistant coach Frank Ouna will however retain his position though the fate of Tom Ogweno, who had been the team’s fitness coach, remains unclear.

Born on 25th July, 1973 in Oeiras, Brazil, Ze Maria earned 25 caps for the Samba Boys and is best remembered for his pin-point crosses during his playing career.

He turned out for several clubs in his country, most notably, Flamengo and Palmeiras. He also established himself as a star player in the Italian Serie A, where he turned out for Parma and Inter Milan.

Though decorated as a player, his coaching record is not as glossy. In 2010, he managed Italian Serie D side Group Castello and later Catabnzaro. His last work station was in Romania where he managed Ceahlăul Piatra Neamț before being sacked after a string of poor results.

POOR RUN

Once unveiled, Ze Maria’s major task will be to turn around the floundering fortunes of the champions, who have not won a single competitive match this year.

Gor have been wobbly and low in confidence losing both legs of the Caf Champions League preliminary clash to Madagascar side, Caisse Nationale de Prévoyance Sociale Sport (CNaPS) as well as falling 1-0 Bandari in the KPL curtain raiser.

In the league, they have recorded three draws and one defeat which came last Sunday in the form of a 1-0 loss to bitter rivals AFC Leopards.

(READ: Leopards stun champions Gor in thriller)

Though club officials were tight lipped on the matter, Ze Maria who is expected to fly straight to Nairobi from Italy where he lives, is believed to have agreed a one-year renewable deal.

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