KCB coach Leonard Saleh (L) with club top scorer Simon Abuko (R)
NSL: What KCB need to miraculously maintain promotion hopes
By Peter Wainaina | Tue 21 Nov, 2017 16:00

KCB will take on Modern Coast Rangers in the side's last league fixture of the campaign on Saturday 25 November with the fixture a do or die encounter for the bankers as they attempt a last throw of the dice in this season’s unpredictable promotion race.

Also Read: NSL: Three midweek games lined up in preparation for season finale

KCB are currently in fourth place out of the qualifying slots locked in a four-way tie for promotion with Ushuru FC, Vihiga United and Wazito FC heading into the ultimate round of fixtures for each side. And will need to be at their top game against the Coastal side and hope for a little bit of luck from the other fixtures to at least make it to the play-off place.

Leonard Saleh’s charges are on 74 points three behind Vihiga and Wazito in second and third place respectively and a further four behind log leaders Ushuru. Last weekend’s 1-1 draw against St. Joseph Youth heavily dented their promotion chances.

Goal Difference Debacle

Automatic qualification could be a little bit beyond their reach as Vihiga’s massive goal difference of +39 which is 14 goals to the good compared to KCB’s +25, logically unable to match. The banker’s hopes therefore lie in finishing third which will see them take on Thika United who finished third from bottom in the just concluded Kenya Premier League (KPL) season in a play-off tie.

For this to happen KCB will have to put four or more past Rangers and hope Wazito who have a healthy +7 goal difference over them lose by the same margin or more against Kenya Police. It is feasible but a long stretch given that Wazito are currently on a nine game winning streak.

KCB in a Hole

Frank Ouna’s team lost to Police by a solitary goal last time the two teams met but advantage to them is that they have conceded three or more goals this season on only two occasions. In the 3-3 draw against struggling Administration Police and a 7-1 drubbing against AFC Leopards in the Gotv Shield.

KCB have dug themselves into a hole given that only a month ago, they were top of the pile looking invincible with a 16 game unbeaten streak that included six wins on the trot. They have crumbled when the pressure has been on them, losing two of their last five games including a 4-1 drubbing by Ushuru that dented their confidence.

Wazito have a psychological advantage between the two as they haven’t lost to KCB this season prevailing 3-0 in the league and 5-3 in the Gotv Shield Cup.

Also Read:
Mwalala going for experience in 2018

Below is the top four fixture list for Saturday 25;

Vihiga United vs Ushuru FC (Mumias 2PM)

KCB vs Modern Coast Rangers (Camp Toyoyo 2PM)

Kenya Police vs Wazito FC (Karuturi 2PM)

Peter Wainaina
Twitter: @naina_naish
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