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Gor better off without Oliech

Monday September 16 2019

Gor Mahia's Dennis Oliech (left) complains to Botswana Referee Joshua Bondo during their Caf Confederation Cup quarter-final first leg match against RS Berkane on April 7, 2019 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Gor Mahia's Dennis Oliech (left) complains to Botswana Referee Joshua Bondo during their Caf Confederation Cup quarter-final first leg match against RS Berkane on April 7, 2019 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

TOM OSANJO
By TOM OSANJO
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There has been a raging debate on one of Kenya’s finest footballers, Dennis Oliech.

Now there is no doubt that Dennis is a talented footballer.

His prowess saw him play top flight football in Europe while starring for the national team Harambee Stars.

However, things went south for the star and he was largely idle when Gor Mahia gave him a contract this year sparking a major controversy.

It might interest you to remember that I was one of the people who stood staunchly behind Oliech even as cynics believed he was a washed out player not fit to sign up for K’Ogalo. I believed the man would take this chance to relaunch his career.

How wrong I was! Reports from the club indicated that Oliech was back to his old bad ways of indiscipline and because of that the club decided to go for divorce to end the clearly bad marriage.

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“In pursuance of the provisions of Clause 6 of your Player Agreement Contract entered into with Gor Mahia Football Club we hereby write to advise you that we have terminated your contract with immediate effect on grounds of Just Cause as also stipulated in Fifa Article 14 Regulations of the Statues and Transfer of Players,” a statement from the club said.

The statement further read: “You have offered yourself as a candidate for popular political elections, a move that is likely to portray the club in bad light, cause disaffection among club’s supporters and fans, a step that is inconsistent with and inimical to your standing as the club’s football player. Further, you have posted a photograph of yourself in the social media donning the club’s jersey indicating your political intentions.”

He was also accused of absconding training. Now, one thing that is clear is if Oliech was behind the posting of the photo on social media, then he deserves to be punished.

Oliech claims it was a joke, but my take is this was a joke taken too far.

Having played in Europe, Oliech should understand the dos and don’ts of a professional player.

As the club rightfully stated, Gor Mahia is a football club and not a political party.

Oliech has threatened legal action against the club, but I can comfortably state that he may not win the case if he was behind the posting of the photo or absconded training on pretext that he was injured.

Again, general practice is if a player is injured, he needs to present himself to the club doctor to ascertain the level of the injury, which Oliech did not.

I have nothing against Oliech. He is one of the greatest Kenya has produced and donning K’Ogalo colours was an honour to the club. But no player is special and rules must be followed.

Oliech has had issues before even in the national team. Bernard Lama, the former Harambee Stars coach said Oliech needed tranquillity to be able to play at the top level.

Adel Amrouche took away the armband from him because he was becoming a wrong influence to the players.

Nothing is new about Oliech’s disciplinary record. I can state here that Gor Mahia is far much better without him.

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