•A 2-1 defeat to Bandari last Sunday at Mbaraki Sports Club in Mombasa marked the team’s wobbly start to the season, the outcome throwing their plans off balance.
•However, Ouma is confident the resilient squad will bounce back emphatically in the next fixture against Posta Rangers, who have previously proven to be a hard nut to crack.
Sofapaka head coach David Ouma has challenged his charges to intensify their efforts in the Kenya Premier League if they hope to compete successfully for the title this season.
A 2-1 defeat to Bandari last Sunday at Mbaraki Sports Club in Mombasa marked the team’s wobbly start to the season, the outcome throwing their plans off balance.
However, Ouma is confident the resilient squad will bounce back emphatically in the next fixture against Posta Rangers, who have previously proven to be a hard nut to crack. The sides will settle scores at the Moi Stadium Kasarani on Saturday.
With Sofapaka looking to regain the league title they last won in 2009, Ouma is predicting a big surprise this season.
“I’m not worried because, with the current crop of players I have, I believe we will get the results we want going forward and we can’t rule out clinching the league,” Ouma said.
“Overall, we have a good team, new signings who played an important role against Bandari on Sunday. It is a matter of time before we finally get everything right,” Ouma said.
As the season progresses, Ouma believes they will gain an edge in the country’s top tier by sharpening their blunt attack line.
“We are now doing very well. The only setback we’ve been experiencing which requires urgent attention is to capitalise on all the chances we create in the game. Football is a game of chances and so we must stop squandering the opportunities we create in matches,” he added.
Last season, Sofapaka’s lacklustre run landed head coach Ken Odhiambo and several of their key players in hot water, and Ouma is eager to avoid the same fate.
Ouma said they learned important lessons against the dockers on Sunday that could help them prepare adequately for their next opponents.
“We took a gradual lead for the better part of the match. However, I feel we should have put up a better show in the final stages of play,” he said. The former Harambee Starlets gaffer has challenged his players to learn to fight bravely until the final whistle.
“Against Bandari, we only had ourselves to blame. Although we played according to our strategy, we gave them too many chances late on and were punished with late goals. “Our main goal now is to get back to winning ways in our next matches,” he said.
The club has strengthened its technical department after appointing David ‘Bandeko’ Okello as goalkeeper coach and Paul Ogai as an assistant coach.
Okello joins the 2009 Kenyan Premier League (KPL) champions from rivals KCB where he played as a goalkeeper for the entire season. He takes the reins of veteran goal-keeping coach Hassan Sunil Shah.