Kenya/Burundi: Gor to Name New Coach as Burundi Opponents Loom

Kenya's representatives in the Caf Champions League, Gor Mahia, start their campaign against Burundian champions Aigle Noir away on Sunday before hosting them in Nairobi after a fortnight.

Gor Mahia assistant coach Patrick Odhiambo is optimistic the team will start their campaign on a high.

"We are in good shape ahead of the match and I have seen a lot of improvement in individual players and progress as a unit. The morale in the team is also very high and we want to start on a positive note by winning away," Odhiambo said after Tuesday's training session at the Camp Toyoyo in Nairobi.

Ivorian striker Gislen Yikpe Gnamian and midfielder Kenneth Muguna trained separately during Tuesday's session but Odhiambo revealed there is no cause for alarm hinting that they will be part of the squad that leaves for Burundi on Friday.

"They don't have serious injuries but we have to be cautious so we allowed them to do light training with the physical trainer as he continues to observe them. They will be good to go by the time we travel so I am not worried. We will have a full squad for the match." He said.

OLIECH ABSENT

Experienced forward Dennis Oliech missed the Tuesday session but Odhiambo says he is still in the team's plans this season.

"He just resumed training after a long layoff due to injury and we don't want to rush him. He trained last week and showed good attitude and professionalism. He is still part of the team but we want him to recover fully without any rush," he said.

The former Sony Sugar coach has been in charge in the absence of coach Hassan Oktay who tendered in his resignation letter on Tuesday evening. He insists he is up to the task.

"I am always a winner and I love football. I am here to do exactly that, win. I came in while Oktay was still around and we have done some good work together already. We will continue with the work in our first continental match against and I hope we get a good result, which is a win." He said.

NEW COACH

However, reliable sources indicate the club has identified English man Steven Pollack - who has previously managed Ghanaian giants Asante Kotoko and Berekum Chelsea - as Oktay's replacement.

"The coach is expected in the country by latest Thursday to put pen to paper and could travel with the team to Burundi," a reliable source told Nation Sport.

It is believed that Oktay's resignation was triggered by the need to be close to his ailing parents as well as siblings in Turkey. The condition of his close family members had weighed down on the Turkish-Cypriot coach who guided K'ogalo to a record-extending 18th league title last term.

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