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Date: 27 May 2019

  Eastern African - Soccer

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Sofapaka snatches late victory over Thika United

[Posted 26 Feb 2013]
[By Charles Malingha]
Sofapaka snatches late victory over Thika United

Eugine Asike saved Sofapaka blushes with a late header to give Batoto Ba Mungu a perfect start to their league campaign in a laboured 1-0 victory over Thika United at Nairobi City stadium on Sunday.

Sofapaka dominated the tie but had to wait until the 83rd minute when Asike rose high to nod the ball into the net, capitalizing on Lucas Indeche error.

The match failed to create much fireworks as anticipated with neither side going for an early kill.

Both coaches paraded their new signings with Sofapaka coach David Ouma opting for an offensive formation that included Zimbabwean import Obadiah Tarumba, the ever-green Titus Mulama and Hilary Echesa while former Germinal Beerschot defender Collins Kisuya stuck to his usual right back position.

Thika coach John Kamua also gave new boys David Kingatua and Simon Mbugua starting roles but neither impressed.

Sofapakaís real chance in the game came in the 36th minute when the bald shaven Mulama made a good attempt with a neat header which crashed on the cross bar and a second attempt by John Baraza cannoned to the back netting with custodian Lucas Indeche out of position.

Irungu made double changes bringing in Ezekiel Odera and midfield wizard Francis Kahata for Freeman Mulber and John Nairuka respectively.

However, Sofapaka continued to press against a resolute Thika defense manned by Simon Mbugua, Dennis Odhiambo, Tonny kizito and Michael Luvutsi.

But when it seemed it would end in all square, Asike, a long term target of Tanzanian outfit Azam FC, rose to the occasion to make the difference.

In an earlier match at the same venue, KCB lived true to their tradition of beginning the season strongly after thrashing a hapless Nairobi City Stars 4-0.

Centre forward Clifford Alwanga was in red hot form grabbing a brace in the 18th and 41st minute while Jacob Keli scored at the half hour mark.

Benedict Owuor also put his name on the score sheet by converting from the spot after winger Edwin Mwaura had been pulled down in the box.

The bankers proved too strong for the opposition, reducing the game from a contest to a mere walk in the park as they notched in the goals in quick succession.The home side had the lionís share of possession and their huge four-goal lead heading into the break gave them more resolve to fight on.

Their goalkeeper Sammy Okinda was largely untested in the matchas his defenders kept the opposition at bay. Jacob Keli and Benjamin Chaka were particularly impressive giving City Stars full backs a torrid time as their pace proved too much fortheir heavy legged markers.

City Stars chances were as few as they came with lead striker JimmyBageya making his first competitive appearance after returning to hisold club from AFC Leopards.

He had a good chance to pull a goal back for his side just five minutesafter the break when Eric Muranda cut a right angle delivery to himand with the goal at his mercy he blasted high.

Elsewhere Sony Sugar and Mathare United settled for a barren draw at the Awendo Green stadium.


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