As a football fan I may have been heart broken on last season’s TPL final match day, but in professional football one of the traditions we all adhere to is to never look back. Gor Mahia may have lost the race to league victory in a rather disheartening way, but with a bit of effort I can just about force myself to briefly reflect on the past year.
As ever it has never been less than exciting at Gor Mahia. Two managers, two major trophies, one of the most contentious games in KPL Top 8 competition’s history and the rebirth of a team that seemed to be slipping from their once stratospheric heights. Great stuff all round except for those of a nervous disposition.
I must admit I felt very sorry for Anaba Awono, it takes time to mould a team in your image and everyone makes mistakes along the way, so maybe in the longer term he would have turned things around. Unfortunately for him that is not the way the modern game works. It is worth remembering that in the previous year; there were some quite phenomenally entertaining games under the Cameroonian’s stewardship.
Then legendary John ‘Bobby’ Ogolla came, but the turn around when Zdravko Logarusic arrived was amazing and when I got to meet him, the Croat was in no way a disappointment. His knowledge of the game, his experience and his ability to get the best out of every single worthwhile player at his disposal bordered on freakish. I can’t wait to see him back.
For all the furore surrounding the season’s finale against Thika United at Tok K’Omwanda, his comments and actions were bordering on impeccable. Clearly furious, he let the fans know what he felt and launched a few broadsides at some members of his team while staying on the right side of proper decorum. It was a balancing act under fans pressure that few if any other managers would have managed.
In the midst of it all Ugandan striker Danny Sserenkuma scored 17 goals and walked away with the prestigious Player of the Year award, to underline that he is officially the best understated great player in the league today. Defender Ivan Anguyo, midfielder Antony Akumu also emerged top of their categories at the KPL awards gala. Of course Zdravko Logarusic was crowned the Year’s best Coach to top off one of the best resurrections since Lazarus got up.
Picking up the famous FKF President’s trophy was obviously the highlight, but I hope the Croat will still be charged with building things from here and hope he will be able to bring a period of growth and maybe more importantly, stability.
Many other fans would agree with me that we have to build a dynasty, and even though some would be quick to point out that it’s long overdue, I feel circumstances dictated no manager has stayed in the post for long enough.
A quick look across at the likes of Arsenal and Manchester United and shows the benefits of having a great manager and keeping him on long enough to allow his personality and his ideas to permeate throughout the club.
That is where the club wants to go and is trying to go and with any luck Logarusic will be the man to do it, time will tell. Obviously there will be a few complaints as we all would have had our own particular preferences, but it is worth remembering that we are fortunate that we can have a well qualified tactician willing to come to do the job, it wasn’t always the case.
Some more silverware in his second season would be great and the beginnings of building a new team will be very welcome as well.
It would be nice to win the FKF Cup again next year as it was such a great occasion this time having eliminated AFC Leopards in the semi-finals. It consoled our hearts and put us on the international scene.
Bring on 2013!