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Mathare United clinch nerve-calming victory over Sharks

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Daniel Otieno celebrates his late winner
  • Daniel Otieno scored an 84th minute winner
  • Mathare won two matches in a row for the first time this season
  • The Slum Boys moved off the bottom of the table

Mathare United picked up a massive victory in their fight to avoid relegation at the end of the season with a hard earned 2-1 win over Kariobangi Sharks. Daniel Otieno scored the winner for Mathare in the 84th minute as they won two matches in a row for the first time this season.

The win, Mathare’s third of the season, sees them climb off the red zone in the FKF Premier League standings for the first time this season.

“This is a huge relief for us because we have been working really hard to get off where we were in the table. We went back to the drawing board and tried to see what was not working and then correcting. We were losing matches because the players were abit fatigued and when we started rotating, we saw results,” said stand-in coach Sammy Koko.

He added; “We started the season later than everybody and even when we started, we were not ready because of the uncertainties. The first few games were like pre-season for us but now, we have picked up and the momentum is on.”

Sharks’ assistant Edward Seda said they needed to work on defensive frailties.

“We weren’t the best defensively and we let in too many gaps. It is what we need to work on moving forward. We have played three matches without a win and we need to work to come back,” the tactician noted.

Daniel Ange scores penalty 

Action between Mathare United and Kariobangi Sharks

Action between Mathare United and Kariobangi Sharks

Mathare opened the scoring midway through the first half through Donald Ange’s penalty. The Congolese forward was hacked down inside the box off a counter and took responsibility himself, sending the keeper the wrong way.

Prior to that, it had been a tactical battle between the two sides in the middle of the pack with not many chances in the final third. Keith Imbali had tried his luck twice from range, one of the strikes sailing straight to the keeper’s arms while the second rolled wide.

With not so much working for them offensively, Sharks made an early change, bringing off Tyson Otieno for striker Peter Odhiambo.

In the second half, Sharks were off faster off the blocks and they levelled just two minutes after the restart through Mathew Kibiwott. The Youth Team graduate ran behind the defense to collect a long ball from his own half before rounding the keeper and hitting the back of the net.

Sharks inspired 

Action between Mathare United and Kariobangi Sharks

Action between Mathare United and Kariobangi Sharks

The goal inspired Sharks and they were more offensive. Kibiwott should have completed his brace minutes later but he was seconds late to lunge on to a Shariff Musa cross from the right. Musa himself had an effort at goal with a shot from close range blocked on the line.

Mathare keeper Bernard Jairo made a brilliant save in the 78th minute to pluck away Odhiambo’s glancing header from the edge of the six yard box.

Meanwhile, Mathare waited on their chance and took it six minutes to time when Otieno rose to brush behind a long throw from Brian Okeyo. Otieno could have sealed the second minutes later, but his rasping shot was turned away by the keeper.

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