Matano says targets still achievable for limping Leopards

AFC Leopards Head Coach Robert Matano says a top five finish in the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) is still within the club’s reach despite having lagged eight places below that target after 19 rounds.

Matano who was entrusted the task of helping Kenya’s second most decorated club to its glory days got his Leopards tenure to positive start, winning his first three matches but a spate of contrasting results have since taken fore.

But the veteran tactician is adamant the squad has the final push to lift themselves above their current position.

“The team is training as usual and there is nothing new we have done. Everything that happened is now behind us and we are determined to focus ahead,” Matano charged.

The Ingwe are without a win in their last three matches, winning only one point from their one-all draw with Western Stima, with second leg losses to the same opposition and Bandari FC leaving them 17 points adrift leaders Gor Mahia FC.

“We are now a different team working for other things. As a coach I must trust my players to deliver,” Matano said.

Their next assignment will be against Wazito FC in the GOtv Shield quarter final and Matano has warned his charges to treat the National Super League (NSL) side with respect when the two clash.

The competition offers Matano a chance to deliver his first trophy to the Den and could also determine his future at the club amid reports he has been asked by the National Executive Committee to win it.

 

“I want to win and nothing short will do,” Matano affirmed.

Leopards Chief Executive Officer Ronald Namai said he hopes to see the team back to its firing best.

Namai also assured the club management is fully behind Matano as he leads his charges through the second leg of the season.

“We must ensure that the team is together for some time and that there is no pressure on the coach to perform. We want to be patient with the coach to let him implement what he wants to. What we want to ensure is that the performance starts improving.”