Gor Mahia were scheduled to to finally fly out of Nairobi for Algeria Friday night for their Caf Champions League first round, first leg match against USM Alger.
The match will be played at the Stade Mustapha Tchaker in Blida from 10.45pm Kenyan time on Sunday.
K’Ogalo were initially scheduled to fly out on Wednesday evening but could not secure funds for air tickets and other expenses.
The Ministry of Sports, Culture and the Arts provided 18 tickets Friday afternoon. The Kenyan champions are scheduled to arrive in Blida barely 24 hours to the match.
Gor coach Steven Polack is however confident the team will do well.
“We are going to Algeria and that is what matters. Nothing is ever perfect and at times we have no control over certain circumstances. We arrive in good time for the players to rest and finalise preparations and I am optimistic we will do well,” the British coach said.
“We are not just representing the club but the fans and Kenya in general and we therefore have to do our best.”
HISTORY BEHING THEM
Gor Mahia played to a barren draw with USM Alger at the group stage of last year’s Champions League at home before falling 2-1 away but Polack says history will count for nothing this time.
“I don’t like looking at history in football because game situations are very different. Of course, we have checked several videos and know what to expect. We know their strengths and weaknesses and therefore have a game plan that I hope will work. North African teams are a very hard nut to crack especially at their backyard and if we manage to score and contain them then I am confident we can kill off the game at home. A 1-1, 0-0 or a 2-1 score line would be a welcome result for me.”
“The players have worked very hard in training all week and I love their attitude. I have been at this club for about six weeks now and I am happy that they are now getting to understand my philosophy. They are willing to learn and that is a good thing,” he added.
Gor Mahia crushed Burundian side Aigle Noir 5-1 on aggregate while USM Alger trounced SONIDEP from Niger 3-1 to advance to the first round.
The return leg will be at Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani in Nairobi on September 29.
Gor Mahia tour party
Boniface Oluoch, David Mapigano, Wellington Ochieng, Tobias Otieno, Nicholas Kipkirui, Kenneth Muguna, Boniface Omondi, Joash Onyango, Dickson Ambundo, Ernest Wendo, Lawrence Juma, Charles Momanyi, Maurice Ojwang and Geoffrey Ochieng, Steven Polack (coach), Jolawi Abondo (team manager)