Tusker FC on Saturday placed one foot in the first round of the Caf Champions League , after a 4-1 thrashing of Seychelles side St Michel United in the first leg of their preliminary round match at the Stade Linite in Victoria.
The KPL champions showed composure to come back from a goal behind in this duel, with a David ‘Cheche’ Ochieng’ brace, each coming on either side of the hal. The other goals from wonder-kid Michael Olunga’s and new Ugandan signing Andrew Ssekyayomba completing the rout.
This result, surely, will go a long way in exorcising the ghosts of last season for the brewers who were eliminated at this very first stage by Rwandan side APR.
Tusker can now even afford the luxury of losing by two goals in Nairobi in two weeks time but still guarantee passage to the first round.
It will be a different affair at this stage though as Egyptian giants and tournament title holders Ah Ahly lie in wait in a competition reserved for clubs that have won their respective national leagues.
Tusker’s team director Charles Obiny revealed during a telephone interview from Victoria that his team should have won by a bigger margin.
We will finish the job
“The game was initially tough but we eventually got our grip on the proceedings. We should have scored more goals as Jesse Were missed three clear cut chances with only the goalkeeper to beat. This outcome places us in a good position and we will finish the job in Nairobi” revealed Obiny, who is the head of delegation in Victoria.
The vicotry hardly comes as a surprise considering the key signingst the team made as coach Robert Matano sought to beef up his playing squad. The team thereafter sacrificed the festive season by traveling to Tanzania and later, Zanzibar to participate in a series of friendly matches and pre-season tournaments.
“For a club of Tusker’s calibre, last season’s results on the continent and in the region were unacceptable, I give thanks to the management for their support and assure you that we will fare much better this time round” coach Robert Matano quipped moments before the team departed for Seychelles on Thursday.
The KPL champions showed composure to come back from a one-goal deficit in this duel. Kenyan International defender Ochieng equalized for the visitors moments to the breather after the home team had taken an early lead.
In the second half, Tusker completely took charge of the match with new signings Olunga and Ssekyayomba grabbing a goal each before Ochieng’ sealed the victory with his second goal of the evening.
The victorious brewers are expected back in the country today afternoon where no doubt Tusker lager will flow in celebration.
Caf Champions League preliminary round, first leg results this weekend: In Bejaia, Algeria -JSM Bejaia (Alg) 3 Olympic (Niger) 0; in Tunis - CA Bizertin (Tunisia) 1 Al Ittihad (Libya) 1; in Rabat - Rabat (Morocco) 1 Real Banjul (Gambia 0; in Victora - St Michel United (Seychelles) 1 Tusker (Kenya) 4.