The mighty Gor Mahia has suffered another blow as Confederation of African Football (Caf) dismissed their appeal to postpone the match against Renaissance Sportive Berkane.
The Kenyan champions are scheduled to take on the North African side in the return leg of their Caf Confederation Cup quarter-final on Sunday but with three hours to kick-off, K’Ogalo is yet to assemble a team for the fixture.
Gor Mahia had troubles reaching Morocco for the return leg and by Sunday afternoon, only eight players were available for selection after the team decided to travel in batches from Nairobi.
How Kogalo players were treated as they prepared to face Morocco’s RS Berkane in the 2nd leg of #TotalCAFCC. And @sportpesa is now claiming the players stage managed this? SHAME ON YOU Sportpesa and Gor Mahia Officials for subjecting our players to degrading treatment! #Sirkal pic.twitter.com/etwBeC7XFu— futacs (@_Atanasi) April 14, 2019
A top official with the team in Morocco has confirmed to media that their plea to have the match rescheduled to Monday, has been dismissed.
“Caf have told us it is not possible and we must honor the match today (Sunday). We are now hoping that the last batch of players can arrive here before the match kicks off,” the official said.
The decision by Caf will force Gor Mahia to field fewer players since the second batch, comprising of the first team, is currently navigating 620km from Casablanca to Berkane, the venue of the match.
CAF declines Gor Mahia’s request to have today’s quarters tie against Berkane be rescheduled; only 8 players are available, kick off time is 10pm. pic.twitter.com/ZXfGXRkUiV— Robin Njogu (@robinnjogu) April 14, 2019
The first batch of players that have already arrived in Berkane includes keeper Shaban Odhoji, Joachim Oluoch, Charles Momanyi, Bernard Ondiek, George Odhiambo, Samuel Onyango, Francis Mustapha, and Wellington Ochieng.
“We have just boarded a bus to Berkane, I do not know how long it will take, but it is highly unlikely that we will arrive on time. This is a high level of disorganization from a big team like Gor Mahia, we are really embarrassed by the events,” a player with the team told media.
Now that CAF will not postpone RS Berkane vs Gor Mahia to allow the latter to raise quorum, they only have 8 players in Berkane currently, he’s what FIFA laws say about the number of players that can play a football match. #TotalCAFCC pic.twitter.com/jwUKIJLWPN— Bonface Osano (@bonfaceosano) April 14, 2019
If the second batch will not arrive on time, it means K’Ogalo will field the eight players against Berkane and the chances of overturning the 2-0 defeat will be slim.