•He said the allure of joining K'Ogalo was too good to turn down but regrets he should have remained at KCB where he scored 10 goals in his debut season in the top tier league.
•He is now keen to lead City Stars’s campaign in the Kenya Premier League next season having helped the club get promoted.
Nairobi City Stars striker Ezekiel Odera regrets signing for Kenya Premier League giants Gor Mahia in 2011.
He said the allure of joining K'Ogalo was too good to turn down but regrets he should have remained at KCB where he scored 10 goals in his debut season in the top tier league.
“Being the young player that I was then, I had a lot of expectations. I guess the pressure was too much for me at that time. If I had stayed at KCB for another year that time, it would have been better for my career,” said Odera.
Odera, however, doesn’t regret missing out on a chance to join Ulunzi Stars due to a lost national ID and Harambee Stars call up to the Nile Basin tournament in Egypt due to lack of a passport.
“Missing out on Ulinzi and the Nile tournament shaped me in different ways,” added Odera who is having his second stint at the club.
On his chances of playing for the national team Harambee Stars, Odera said: “It is every player's dream to play for the national team. I’m happy I had the chance to get a call up to the game against Uganda in 2010 as well as to the Nile Basin squad of early 2011. For now, I have retired from the national team.”
His saddest moment as a player was when the AFC Leopards management sent him on loan to KCB FC in 2019 for reasons unknown to him yet he was the club’s top goal scorer. “It was heartbreaking for me as a player,” he told the club’s website.
Odera, who has played 177 Premier League games and scored 41 goals desires to be a youth coach at City Stars when he retires from active football.
Odera hailed the club’s sponsors —Jonathan Jackson Foundation— which has changed the club’s fortunes. “Now things are different. We have a sponsor in the Jonathan Jackson Foundation and everything is on course,” he said.
He added: “Back then, we had financial difficulties, but thanks to Peter Jabuya who always worked his ways to ensure our needs were met without a sponsor.”
The well-travelled player has also had stints at Ushuru, Sofapaka, and Thika United. He is now keen to lead City Stars’ campaign in the Kenya Premier League next season, having helped the club get the promotion.