Milton Ochieng in Alexandria, Egypt
Kenyan champions Gor Mahia FC will be without first choice goalkeeper Boniface Oluoch when they face Zamalek SC on Sunday night for their CAF Confederation Cup return leg match in Alexandria.
The Kenyan international picked up an injury before their clash against NA Hussein Dey and there were fears another goalkeeper Peter Odhiambo would be unavailable after he ran into visa problems in Algeria.
The hitch was however resolved and he has since joined the rest of the squad in the Egyptian city where they will look to return top of Group D with victory against Zamalek.
Defender Shafique Batambuze will also be sidelined in the Sunday clash after getting his second back to back booking in the competition.
The Ugandan was instrumental in Gor’s 2-0 victory over Hussein Dey in Nairobi, setting up Francis Kahata for the opener with a fine cross and put in an impressive shift at the back for their first clean sheet of the group stages.
He was also involved in Gor Mahia’s goal in Algeria which was disallowed by Malian referee Boubou Traore. Batambuze headed home a Francis Kahata corner but the referee ruled it out citing infringement.
This is even as Gor Mahia coach Hassan Oktay said he is aware the Egyptians will try to harass Gor in the early minutes of the game but their intensity will die with time.
‘’In the first 30 minutes, they tend to play with intensity and try to look for early goals. But we are also going to keep them at bay and try not to concede here’’, said Oktay.
Oktay says he knows the Egyptians will have the home advantage but that will not stop K’Ogalo from snatching at least a point.
Gor Mahia will be praying that Angola’s Petro Atletico beat Algeria’s NA Hussein Dey to keep their hopes alive. Na Hussein Dey are currently group ‘D’ leaders with 7 points with K’Ogalo .
Oktay says with a lot of determination, nothing will stop them from making it to the last eight. The match kicks off Sunday 10 at Borg Al Arab Stadium in Alexandria.