New twist at the top of KPL log as Sofapaka thump leaders Mathare

Mathare United saw their three point lead at the top of the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) standings wiped off on Tuesday 12 February as they suffered a 4-1 loss to Sofapaka in a round 13 fixture played at the MISC Kasarani, a day that also saw Bandari FC take full advantage to move to joint top, thanks to a 2-0 win over Vihiga United.

A dominant first half from Sofapaka, saw John Baraza’s men sail to a 3-0 lead thanks to goals from Elly Asieche, Titus Achesa and Umaru Kasumba inside the first 45 minutes to set them on course to a fifth straight victory.

Mathare would attempt a comeback in the second stanza with Kevin Kimani scoring to give Francis Kimanzi’s side hope with 20 minutes left on the clock. But the goal would result to a mere consolation as Kasumba sealed his brace with a goal in stoppage time to condemn Mathare to their heaviest loss of the season.

Early goal                      

Asieche, who limped out with injury before the half was over, netted as early as the 2nd minute with a superb strike from distance though Mathare keeper Allan Owiny could have done better in trying to keep it out.

Umaru Kasumba (R) has now netted five goals this season (Pic: Mathare United)

The goal rocked the log leaders who conceded another on the half hour mark after a free kick from Achesa was deflected in; the set piece coming after Roy Okal had conceded a foul after losing possession just outside the area.

The game would be put to bed with two minutes remaining of the stanza when Ugandan forward Kasumba reacted quickest to Owiny spilling out a John Avire free kick.

A more improved showing in the second-half from Mathare would see Sofapaka play on the back foot and it paid off in the 70th minute when Kimani netted his fourth of the campaign from close range but the comeback would not come to be as Kasumba riffled a shot that ricocheted off the crossbar and into the net on 90 minutes to register his fifth goal of the season.

Winless run

The result extends Mathare’s winless run to four games now (two draws and two losses) but they still maintain top spot with 25 points, thanks to a superior goal difference with Sofapaka moving up to 3rd with 23 points.

Mathare’s collapse is a welcome result to the chasing pack and more so Bandari FC who moved level with the slumboys at the top of the standings thanks to a 2-0 win over Vihiga United at the Mbaraki Sports Complex.

Goals in each half from David King’atua and Yema Mwana lifted Bandari up to 25 points with the Mombasa based side now boosted as they have a game in hand over Mathare.

Action from the Mbaraki Sports Complex as Bandari defeated Vihiga 2-0 (Pic: Bandari FC)

Elsewhere at the Bukhungu Stadium in Kakamega, hosts Kakamega Homeboyz were subjected to their fifth loss of the campaign by visitors Kariobangi Sharks who claimed a slim 1-0 win.

Shaphan Oyugi grabbed the all-important goal for Sharks in the 10th minute to help lift his side up to 5th place with 21 points, they too have the benefit of having played a game less.

Homeboyz on their part remain in 11th place with 14 points.

Relegation

At the opposite end of the table, Posta Rangers moved off the bottom of the pile thanks to a 2-0 win over Nzoia Sugar at the Kenyatta Stadium in Machakos.

The win is Rangers’ third of the season and lifts them out of the relegation zone and into 14th place with 11 points while Nzoia remain in 8th place with 17 points.

Tuesday’s action concluded match day 13 that commenced on Saturday 9. Below are all the results of the round;

Tuesday

Kakamega Homeboyz 0-1 Kariobangi Sharks

Posta Rangers 2-0 Nzoia Sugar

Mathare United 1-4 Sofapaka

Bandari 2-0 Vihiga United

Monday

Mt. Kenya 0-2 KCB

Sony Sugar 0-0 Chemelil Sugar

Ulinzi Stars 1-1 Western Stima

Sunday

Zoo FC 0-1 Tusker FC

Saturday

Gor Mahia 2-0 AFC Leopards