NAIROBI, March 4 (Xinhua) — Gor Mahia head coach Hassan Oktay wants his players to march on to their next task after their grip on Group D of the CAF Confederations Cup loosened with a 1-0 loss to Algerian side NA Hussein Dey.
Oktay is now aiming to come up with a winning team for the trip to Cairo on Sunday, where Gor Mahia will take on African giants Zamalek of Egypt.
A win for either side will be critical in their plans to progress to the competition’s quarterfinals.
“It is our duty to make things right and not by looking at the past but the present. We have the best chance now because we beat them at home and we can easily beat them away. My players are determined and will make it happen,” said Oktay on Monday.
Gor Mahia had a goal disallowed in Algiers, with replays showing the referee had made a mistake, but Oktay wants his charges to look forward and try to win their match against Zamalek.
“We have a chance to correct that poor away record if we win on Sunday and that is our target,” said Oktay.
Gor Mahia are yet to win an away match in the last decade of continental football, but Oktay believes every run has to come to an end, and Cairo might just be the place to remind Africa that the balance of power has tilted from North to East Africa.
While Gor Mahia were losing in Algiers to Hussein Dey, Zamalek clawed themselves back into the Confederations Cup title race with a 1-0 victory at Petro Atletico of Angola in Luanda.
Hussein Dey now top Group D with seven points, one more than Gor Mahia in second, while Zamalek are third on five and Petro Atletico sit bottom with four points. Two more rounds remain in the six-match schedule.
Zamalek are the joint-third most successful club in CAF competitions with nine titles, including five CAF Champions League triumphs. But they have not lifted an African trophy since 2003 when they defeated Wydad Casablanca of Morocco in the CAF Super Cup.
Gor Mahia will play their return leg against Zamalek in Cairo on Sunday (March 10) before returning home to play Petro Atletico in Nairobi on March 17.