Gor Mahia staring at Champions League exit

Wednesday March 18 2020
By JEFF KINYANJUI

Gor Mahia suffered a 4-1 defeat in the hands of Algerian side USM Alger in a first round Caf Champions League match at the Stade Mustapha Tchaker in Bilda on Sunday night.

Mohamed Rabie scored the opener in the 16th minute, sending in a volley from inside the box after a good cross from Muaid Ellafi on the left flank. 

Rabie doubled his side's lead in the 45th minute from the spot after Gor Mahia custodian David Mapigano was adjudged to have fouled him in the box. 

Algeria Under 23 International Zakaria Benchaa made it 3-0 with brilliant curler into the corner as the game went to the breather with the Algerian champions firmly in control. 

Play was stopped for a minute after Gor Mahia striker Nicholas Kipkirui was elbowed by Hamza Kudri in the 47th minute and had to be attended to my medics. Kenneth Muguna took the resultant freekick but USM keeper Ismael Mansour easily picked it. Samuel Onyango came in for the injured Kipkirui a few minutes later.

K’Ogalo pulled one back in the 55th minute, captain Muguna sending Mansouri the wrong way after Charles Momanyi's goal-bound shot was handled in the box. 

Zakaria Benchaa grabbed his second in the 75th minute to make it 4-1, reacting fast to tap in a rebound from the edge of the box after a freekick had beaten Mapigano but bounced off the post. 

USM Alger's big win at home means they carry a huge advantage to Nairobi when the two teams meet for the return leg in Kasarani on September 29 with the aggregate winner entering the group stage of the competition.

Gor Mahia line-up

David Mapigano (GK), Wellington Ochieng, Geoffrey Ochieng, Charles Momanyi, Joash Onyango, Tobias Otieno, Lawrence Juma, Kenneth Muguna (C), Bonface Omondi, Dickson Ambundo, Nicholas Kipkirui