Leopards pile misery on Mathare, Gor edge Vihiga
Elvis Rupia scored the winner as AFC Leopards edged Mathare United 1-0 to go level on 36 points with the FKF Premier League leaders KCB FC on Thursday.
Rupia who had failed to find the back of the net in his last three matches, collected a splendid pass outside the box before dispatching it beyond goalkeeper Job Ochieng.
KCB remain top of the standings thanks to their superior goal difference with Tusker sitting just one point behind the leading duo.
At the Mumias Sports Complex, Gor Mahia FC emerged 1-0 victors over Vihiga United to climb into fifth on 28 points. The champions can go to within five points of the summit if they win their game in hand.
Manuel Vaz Pinto’s charges were able to hold onto the slim lead – courtesy of a goal scored by Clifton Miheso – earned in the first half against a side that defeated them in the first leg in Nairobi.
Gor made a brilliant fourth-minute move but they could not get the opener as Vihiga United’s Mustapha Oduor was able to collect a final strike by Miheso. In the eighth minute, Miheso again was denied by the former Nzoia Sugar goalkeeper as his header – after another ambitious move – was collected with ease.
Patrick Okullo came close to getting an opener for the hosts in the 11th minute through a free-kick but Gad Mathews was alert enough to clear the ball that was heading to the right top corner. Dennis Monda of Vihiga United was the first player to be yellow-carded after a dangerous challenge on Kenneth Muguna.
Geoffrey Ochieng was cautioned with a yellow card three minutes after Monda for his rough tackle on Dennis Simiyu. Vihiga United had to make a change in the 20th minute when Monda could not continue with the assignment and Stewart Omondi came on as his replacement.
Miheso and Oduor yet again found themselves on a one-on-one occasion a minute after the half-hour mark and the goalkeeper was able to stop the Gor Mahia winger from finding the back of the net. However, in the 40th minute, the custodian could not stop Miheso from breaking the deadlock with a long-range shot.
Oduor was again on hand to help Vihiga United from conceding the second goal when he denied Karim Abdoul from close range in the 54th minute. Coach Mike Mururi made a change in the 57th minute with the introduction of Lawrence Luvanda for Okullo.
Vihiga United’s Junior Adefeya was yellow-carded in the 82nd minute while Gor Mahia made a change in the 87th minute when Fred Nkata came on for Abdoul.
The champions held onto the slim win to pick three points with a resounding defensive display during the latter stages.
-Godfrey Ashiali contributed to this report