Sometimes last week during our daily Nation Sport meeting I was challenged by my colleagues to reveal the secret behind Ingwe’s current success on the pitch.
I immediately reached the technical bench who told me they pull together and work well with the team management to accomplish the impossible.
They also confirmed that our head coach, Andre Casa Mbungo was heavily involved in recruitment this season.
As one of the best qualified scouts in Africa who can work on several projects simultaneously, Mbungo had identified areas that needed to be strengthened, and immediately the season ended he gave a list of things to do to management.
We no longer have blame-shifting since he appointed experienced Soter Kayumba to be the field captain and the players are now working well as a team.
Kayumba speaks up on occasion when he has a dispute with the coach or a colleague and is the right personality you would want to work with when the morale is down. That’s experience you just can’t buy!
Assistant coach Anthony Kimani and team manager Tom Juma have reminded the players of Ingwe’s culture, something that has boosted morale at the Den and the players now infuse passion in their industry for club.
Our technical bench has earned respect among the players for the way they engage them.
Those still talking negatively about the team effort must know that everybody is working hard at the Den. Mbungo, who deals with everything in a professional and healthy way, is the kind of person who will go above and beyond to help when the team is under pressure.
The 51-year-old tactician started by making sure his playing unit was completely aware of the club’s financial situation, just like other teams who had even written to KPL requesting to have their fixtures postponed.
Mbungo recruited quality players including goal-poaching John Mark Makwatta who has earned a recall to the national team Harambee Stars after a good outing, thus far, with Ingwe.
Defence was Leopards’ main undoing last season, but the arrival of Clyde Senaji from Tusker, Robert Ayala Mudenyi from Sony Sugar in addition to Kayumba in the central defence has turned round the backline. Collins Shivachi is also playing his role well in the right-back position. Isaac Kipyegon, who started on a low note, has also improved in the left-back position.
New arrivals Hansel Ochieng, Austine Ochieng and Tresor Ndikumana have stabilised our midfield, while Ugandan Benjamin Ochan has been outstanding between the posts.