Kenya/Egypt: Goal Keeping Crisis Hit Sofapaka Ahead of Ismailia Clash

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    Nairobi Star (Nairobi)

    Muigai Kiguru

    18 March 2011


    Former Kenyan Premier League champions Sofapaka face goal keeping crisis as they prepare to take on Egypt’s Ismailia tonight in a first leg match of the second round of the Africa Confederations Cup.

    The Kenyan representatives will have to make do with third choice goalkeeper George Opiyo as their first choice stopper Wilson Obungu and his deputy Zachary Onyango have been ruled out of the clash with injuries.

    But upon departure on Wednesday, the team’s head coach Ezekiel Akwana said this will not be a reason for them not to get a result since it’s Opiyo, who kept out champions Ulinzi during the SuperSport/Dstv Cup last month.”We have confidence in Opiyo and we are comfortable with him between the posts,” said Akwana. “However, if Onyango passes a last minute physical fitness test, we will have to make the gamble,” he said.

    Besides the two keepers, the team will also miss the services of inspirational striker Bob Mugalia who remains suspended after receiving two yellow cards over the last two legs of the first round of the competition against Angola’s Aviacao SC.

    However, 2010 KPL top scorer John Baraza is expected to partner with swift foot Peter Kagogo in search of what is considered an elusive but important away goal.

    Sofapaka held the Angolans 0-0 in Luanda before beating them 5-4 on post match penalties at the Nyayo Stadium last month.It will be the second time in a row Sofapaka will be meeting Ismailia after the Egyptians edged out the Batoto Ba Mungu in last year’s Africa Champions League competition.”We want to revenge on the defeat this time round,” said Akwana. Kenyan teams have had a bad record against Egyptian opposition with the latest being the elimination of Ulinzi Stars from the Africa Champions League at the hands of Zamalek courtesy of a 5-1 aggregate score line (4-0 in the first leg at Nyayo Stadium and 1-0 in Cairo in the return leg).”We hope we can make a difference this time round,” said Sofapaka skipper James Situma. “We are going there to get a positive result and then put the last nail in their coffin during the second leg.”

    The teams take onto the pitch at 8:30pm Kenyan time .

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    Kenya/Egypt: Goal Keeping Crisis Hit Sofapaka Ahead of Ismailia Clash