- Tusker FC won 2-0 when the two sides last met on Saturday at the Ruaraka Complex in Nairobi
- The brewers can go all the way to third with victory in Nakuru
- Ulinzi has won only one of their last five matches
Defending champions Tusker FC are out to keep their winning momentum going as they take on Ulinzi Stars in the return tie of their FKF Premier League fixture at the ASK Nakuru Showground on Wednesday afternoon.
The brewers won the reverse fixture 2-0 in Nairobi on Saturday and are looking to complete a double over the military side and move into the top three of the standings.
They have fond memories of their last visit to the same venue in June last year when they thrashed their hosts 4-1 to confirm their place as Kenya’s representatives in the CAF Champions League.
After a horrid start to the campaign, Robert Matano’s men seem to have finally found their footing and over the last five games have won four, keeping a clean sheet in all.
As they play against Ulinzi in their remaining match at hand, Matano’s alemen have their ambition on picking win number five.
“It will be a difficult game again because we know they will come back stronger and will definitely make changes to how they played in Nairobi. It is now up to us to do the things that worked well for us and also correct a few of the weaknesses we noted,” said midfielder Jackson Macharia, speaking to the club’s official website.
Macharia was one of the scorers in the 2-0 win on Saturday and is also a man who has been slowly getting back to form after missing for the first three weeks of January as he sorted out his contractual issues with the club.
One factor that has been key for Tusker in their last five games is the fact that Matano has maintained a consistent starting 11 and it is expected he will do the same on Wednesday.
He will only have to make one change with Daniel Sakari out injured after spraining his ankle in Saturday’s win. He will have the option of either Wellington Ochieng or Kevin Monyi manning that position.
A win for Tusker will see them move to 32 points, same as second placed Nairobi City Stars but with an inferior goal difference. They will just be five points behind leaders Kakamega Homeboyz.
Meanwhile, Ulinzi Stars are seeking to pit their run back on track after a woeful second half of the first leg. The military men who are placed 13th in the standings have only won one of their last five matches.
They have had to recall coach Benjamin Nyangweso back into the team to help put their campaign back on track and the tactician will be out to outwit Matano, who was his senior coach when he coached Ulinzi Stars between 2014 and 2016.
The military side can move all the way to 11th if they manage to earn three points at home against Tusker.
In terms of head to head record, the tie is evenly poised with each having won nine matches in their last 27 meetings while the remaining nine ended in draws. Seven of Ulinzi’s nine wins have come at home with the last one being in 2019 when they won 1-0.
Tusker on the other hand have had four of their nine wins against Ulinzi come in Nakuru, the last one being the 4-1 thrashing last year.