Mwalala takes blame for Bandari’s slump
Bandari FC head coach Bernard Mwalala has conceded the club has lost the mojo that propelled them to second spot league finish last season and took responsibility for their uninspiring run.
Bandari has not won any of their last six matches and lost at home to Gor Mahia FC for the first time since 2017 on Sunday to leave Mwalala scratching his head harder, his countenance telling the pressure he is under.
Samuel Onyango and Francis Afriye scored a goal apiece to hand Gor a deserved 2-0 victory at the Mbaraki Stadium, much to the chagrin of the beleaguered tactacian who has now given up season’s title ambitions.
“I take responsibility for the results. We have everything, we are preparing well but we are not able to deliver. We must talk with the players and tell each other candidly what are the missing links,” a disturbed Mwalala told after the match.
The former Harambee Stars respected striker also said he is lacking a quality striker in his squad, revealing his January transfer window plans.
“We clearly don’t have an outstanding striker to finish off the many chances we are creating. I must find one in the forthcoming transfer window as this gap has lingered for long now,” he stated.
Mwalala has been depending on Ugandan William Wadri, Abdallah Hassan and Yema Mwana in poaching goals while his only main out and out striker Wycliffe Ochomo has been on and off this season.
While most of the clubs in the league are struggling to cope without sponsors in the Kenyan Premier League (KPL), Bandari have been enjoying the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) funding which has not yielded directly proportionally.
“This is sad and unacceptable. We are not playing the free flowing coastal football we are known for. No entertainment at all. You cannot be coming to watch a team playing dull football and not winning. You can’t tell the team’s philosophy. You better lose while entertaining your fans…” said a KPA official on condition of anonymity.
On the other hand, former Harambee Stars midfielder Semeon Mulama thinks high expectations are costing Bandari.
“Sometimes a team needs just to relax and play. You cannot win all matches, an understanding that reduces pressure on the coach and players. You may fail to win but give a satisfying display. Sometimes parameters of success are not just about trophies, especially in KPL.
“It would be wrong for the Bandari management to think of changing a coach now. In fact, more pressure on him will only yield more woes to the club,” said the former Mathare United and Ismailia ace, commenting on the rigmorale sarrounding Mwalala’s future among the fans and officials.
Bandari are now 12th on the log with just 12 points, with their next assignment being away to Tusker FC, who are second with 21.
“We have to go and play, we don’t have an option but to rise over the poor fastest possible. Tusker are doing very well currently but we have to react to today’s (Sunday) loss positively,” he conceded.