IN DAR ES SALAAM
Gor Mahia humiliated arch-rivals AFC Leopards 3-0 to clinch the SportPesa Super Cup title at Uhuru Stadium in Dar es Salaam on Sunday.
The win over their eternal rivals, their second over leopards this season, not only extended Gor’s bragging rights but also earned them Sh3 million prize money and a ticket to play English Premier League side Everton in a friendly match in July.
Timothy Otieno - who was also on the scoresheet in the first Mashemeji derby played 34 days ago at Nyayo Stadium, broke the deadlock at the hour mark. Oliver Maloba doubled the lead on the 78th minute, eleven minutes after replacing Otieno.
Former Leopards player John Ndirangu completed the rout with a neatly taken goal in stoppage time.
Gor have now won 26 matches and drawn 30 in the last 84 matches between the two giants in Kenyan football.
It was also the first meeting between the giants outside the country in 32 years.
KAGERE THE DESTRIOYER-IN-CHIEF
Meddie Kagere, who emerged as the tournament’s top scorer with three goals, provided assists for the opening two goals.
Gor Mahia were fast off the blocks, testing Leopards goalkeeper Ian Otieno early on with Kagere and Timothy Otieno pushing for the opener.
Innocent Wafula came close to opening the scoring after 22 minutes but headed wide from Kagere’s pin-point cross.
Three minutes later, Kenneth Muguna’s attempted lob past Ian Otieno was cleared by Abdallah Salim whiles Dennis Sikhai dispossessed Philemon Otieno down the right wing only for his cross to be picked by Gor custodian Peter Odhiambo.
Leopards had another opportunity on the 36th minute through Allan Kateregga. The Ugandan winger beat his markers before placing his curling shot off the mark, the first half ending goalless.
Gor, inspired by the presence of head coach Jose Marcelo Ferreira who was on the dugout for the first time in the tournament, came back and attacked with purpose in the second half.
Timothy Otieno finally opened the scoring at the hour mark, superbly converting from inside the area from Kagere’s pass to draw wild celebrations from travelling Gor Mahia fans on the stands.
If Timothy’s goal was as a result of poor marking by the Leopards backline, then the second must have annoyed coach Dorian Marin. Kagere broke on the left wing before releasing a low cross that Abdalla failed to clear, giving Maloba the easiest of tasks with the goal mouth begging.
The former Nairobi City Stars man stabbed home before, Ndirangu – who was released in January by Leopards after a troubled year-long stint at the club, beat Ian Otieno with a stunning effort some 22 yards from goal.
"The boys did a good job. They played well from the first to the last minute. It's good win that will motivate us in the league matches,” Ferreira said after the match.
"Congrats to Gor Mahia. They played well and deserved to win. They outplayed us in each half and made it difficult for us to settle in the match,” Leopards assistant coach Dennis Kitambi said.