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The former Harambee Stars captain explains how Ingwe lost their first match of the 202-21 campaign to the Kisumu-based side

AFC Leopards coach Anthony Kimani has admitted a lack of concentration denied his team a point from their FKF Premier League match against Western Stima on Friday.

Ingwe went into the match against the Powermen on the back of winning their opening three matches and were headed to snatch a draw from the home fixture before the visitors scored two goals in added time to win 2-0 and end their unbeaten start to the season.

After managing to keep the marauding Ingwe at bay for the entire 90 minutes, the Kisumu-based side grabbed winning goals in the additional time courtesy of Joseph Mukisa and Villa Oruchum.

The former Harambee Stars captain has now explained the reason he thinks they suffered defeat, insisting his players lost concentration at a very vital moment of the game and it became difficult for them to bounce back.

“I think we had a good performance but not the result we expected, we started the game very well, created several chances but we were not able to utilise our chances and again we also lost concentration at a very vital moment of the game, we got punished and we were not able to pick ourselves from that particular point,” Kimani told AFC Leopards TV.

“We lacked the urgency that we wanted and we also were not able to be as mobile as we wanted to be, we were not able to run in the right spaces because they were playing very compact.

“We had also discussed about it and we knew which areas we were supposed to utilise but then again that final pass into those areas was not forthcoming and when it came to decision making, it was also a little bit slow so we gave them time to regroup and to get into a very good defensive position and that is why it was difficult to break them down.”

On why he pulled out new signing Fabrice Mugheni, Kimani said: “It was a tactical move, we knew that we had to get another striker if we were to get a goal and Hansel [Ochieng] has been doing very well in training and he deserves that opportunity but again I have said it was just one of those days when nothing seems to be going right for you and I believe the inclusion of [Hansel] was to help us move the ball forward.”

On what he intends to do to make sure the team bounces back to winning ways in their next league assignment, Kimani explained: “First of all is to ensure the boys don’t keep their heads down, it’s a disappointing performance but it is very important that we pick ourselves up as soon as possible, we still have some important matches coming up, this is just our fourth match of the season meaning there is a very long way to go.

“The first thing is to get the boys in the right frame of mind, to know that we still have another match where we can make amends and get a good result and also give a very good account of ourselves.”

On whether the defence was to blame for the two goals conceded against Western Stima, Kimani said: “Definitely it is something we have talked about, we knew we are going to get many opportunities to move forward but as you move forward, the danger that remains is how we defend if they counter-attack.

“The players were well briefed of what to expect but again like I said before we lost concentration at a very crucial moment of the game about a minute or two to go and it was very difficult for us to bounce back into the game.”

Before the defeat, AFC Leopards had won all their matches – 2-1 against Tusker, 2-0 against Bidco United, and 3-0 against Sofapaka – while Western Stima were winless before the Kasarani encounter given that they drew 0-0 with Bidco United, lost to Sofapaka 3-1 before they were humbled 5-2 at home by Tusker.

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December 20, 2020
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