KCB Beat Mathare United to move on top, Homeboyz lose unbeaten run
The bankers deposed Homeboyz from the top on goal difference after the latter saw their unbeaten run come to a halt courtesy of a 1-0 home loss against FC Talanta at the Bukhungu Stadium.
Edwin Lavatsa scored the lone goal for Talanta in the 18th minute, a lead that the Ken Kenyatta coached side held on till the end.
While Homeboyz dropped to second in the standings, Talanta shot up to sixth with 20 points, just five off the leaders.
At the Kasarani Annex, KCB were forced to work extra hard to beat a stubborn Mathare United side, Derrick Otanga scoring the winner with 14 minutes left on the clock.
“Of course our targets this season remain to do better than last season and for us, we do not want to get into the pressure of saying we want to fight for the title. We just take a match at a time and see what comes off it. But I am really proud of how we performed today,” said KCB coach Zedekiah Otieno.
His opposite number Ezekiel Akwana was left fuming over the officiating, especially citing a second half incident when the team thought they should have had a penalty.
“I am very disappointed today because of the amateurish referring we saw. The official today didn’t manage the game well and he missed out on crucial incidences which I believe would have given us a chance to win the game. But despite that, I am proud of how we have played,” said the tactician.
KCB had the most of the chances in the game, but Mathare had been resolute in their defending while they also had close opportunities to score.
It was the bankers who knocked first on the Mathare door. In the 18th minute, David ‘Messi’ Owino had a good chance, when he picked up a cut back from Simon Abuko, but his attempt at curling the ball to the top corner on his weaker right foot was over and wide.
Owino was to tee up Michael Mutinda for KCB’s second chance of the game a minute later off a clever start to a freekick from Baraka Badi. However, Mutinda’s shot was turned behind for a corner by the keeper despite taking an awkward bounce right infront of him.
Mathare were doing well to manage the fast paced KCB attack and their high defense line was efficient in picking out offside calls efficiently.
Akwana’s men had a good chance in the 28th minute, their first real sniff at goal. Former KCB man Martin Nderitu was fouled from 30 yards out. Kennedy Ochieng stood behind the ball and gave it a nice curl over the wall but his effort was just wide.
In the 37th minute, they had an effort on target when Daniel Otieno took on a shot from range, but it flew straight to the keeper’s arms.
Four minutes later, they had a golden opportunity to break the deadlock off a counter attack. Eugene Wethuli brilliantly beat KCB’s offside trap before running at goal. However, he failed to hit the target with only the keeper to beat, sending his shot wide.
In the second half, Mathare started well and thought they had a penalty midway through the half when John Mwangi, who had come on as a sub was brought down. Mathare believed it should have been a penalty, but the referee awarded a freekick as he said the foul was outside the box.
Despite protests from the Mathare players, the ref stuck to his earlier decision, with Daniel Otieno’s effort being finger tipped behind for a corner.
Mathare were caught off the counter in the 74th minute when substitute James Mazmebe picked the ball on the left. His shot one on one with the keeper was saved, but Otanga was in the right place to slam the rebound home.
Akwana’s men fought to pick at least a point off the fixture with Nderitu seeing his well taken shot come off the outside of the bar while Meshack Muyonga sent a rocket of a shot inches over the bar.
Meanwhile in other fixtures, Bandari moved to third in the standings after beating Sofapaka by a solitary goal in Wundanyi courtesy of Danson Chetambe’s goal.
In Nakuru, Kariobangi Sharks picked a vital 1-0 victory against Ulinzi Stars while at the Nyayo National Stadium, Kenya Police annihilated fellow new boys Vihiga Bullets 4-0.