•Aussems, who took the reigns at the den a week ago, said off-the-pitch issues have affected his team.
• He however expressed optimism going forward after the resolution of the financial issues.
Poor preparation caused by financial problems at the den saw AFC Leopards succumb to a 2-1 loss at Bandari FC’s Mbaraki Stadium on Friday.
A single training session out of a possible seven before the match exposed Belgian tactician Patrick Aussems’ charges poor form against the dockers.
Lack of concentration was evident from as early as the fifth minute when midfielder Marvi Nabwire’s tame back pass was intercepted by Bandari’s leading scorer William Wadri, who rounded keeper Benjamin Ochan before putting Bandari into the lead.
Eleven minutes later, it was skipper Robinson Kamura who delayed with the ball at his feet, inviting Bandari’s speedy winger Hassan Abdalla to dispossess him before setting up Wadri, whose powerful shot from the edge of the penalty area sneaked in under Ochan’s arms.
However, Ingwe slowly got into the match, dominating the midfield.
Nabwire made amends for his earlier error by losing his marker and getting to Austin Odhiambo’s inch-perfect cross from the corner first and redirecting it past a helpless Justin Ndukimana in Bandari’s goal.
Aussems, who took the reigns at the den a week ago, said off-the-pitch issues have affected his team.
“When you have only one training session before a game, it is not like a professional team. It is like an amateur team. We only had one session yesterday (Thursday),” said Aussems.
AFC players were on strike for about three days and failed to show up for training as they demanded their three-month salary arrears.
He, however, expressed optimism going forward after the resolution of the financial issues.
“Everything has been solved now,” said the coach. “We just played for 80 minutes. The first 10 minutes we were not there,” said Aussems.
His opposite number, Cassa Mbungo went home happy with his lads who appeared sharper than in previous matches having utilised two of the four clear chances they created.
On Thursday, he lamented his forward line’s profligacy in front of goal but Wadri’s fifth and sixth goals of the premier league season put a smile on their faces.
“What I am worried about is our aggressiveness, especially in the first half. They were more aggressive than us,” said Mbungo of a side that missed six training sessions.
He said the transition from defence to attack is another thing to worry about.
“We were slow and uncoordinated,” said the Rwandan tactician.
Harrison Mwendwa was a livewire on the left flank, giving Bandari fullback Duncan Otewa a torrid time.
Ingwe pumped up the pressure after the Nabwire’s goal which seemed to spark them into life but Bandari held on to lead until halftime.
Aussems' pep talk at half time seemed to have instilled a sense of belief in Ingwe, who started the second half on the front foot.
Introduction of Said Tsuma at half time gave the Leopards a fresh impetus as the Dockers were pinned in their own half for most of the second half.
The Leopards dominated the midfield.
Mbungo hooked off Benjamin Mosha and Dan Namasaka for Darius Msagha and Yema Mwana in the 62nd minute for the coastal side to try and shake things up.
Aussems responded by taking off goal scorer Nabwire for Hansel Ochieng to put more pressure on their hosts.
A howler by Ochan almost gifted Bandari the third goal in the 88th minute after he failed to catch a high ball but reacted quickly to take the ball off substitute Mwana's head.
Collins Agade was taken off in the 90th minute and was replaced by Dan Guya as Mbungo sought to kill precious seconds.
In the end, Bandari bounced back from Gor Mahia’s loss at home in their last league match.