Kenyan international Eric Johanna had the perfect debut at his new club, Swedish top flight side IF Brommapojkarna, scoring a goal and providing an assist as the team beat second tier side Ekilstuna 2 – 0 in a preseason friendly match on Saturday 20 January at Grimsta IP Stadium in Stockholm.
Johanna will be hoping for a better second season in Sweden after his previous team, IF Vasalund was relegated from the second tier in the 2017 campaign and his good start will definitely give him hope.
The Kenyan international set up Spaniard Nieves Maikel for the opener in the 20th minute and got on the score sheet nine minutes later to seal a comfortable win in a game that also saw another Kenyan international David Ochieng feature after his move from New York Cosmos in the past week.
Johanna Omollo - Belgium
Still in Europe, another Kenyan international Johanna Omollo was a second half substitute as his second tier side Cercle Brugge hit Lierse SK 4 – 1 to go top of the log with 30 points, two better than Lierse’s tally after
Omollo was introduced to the game in the 57th minute, taking up Gianni Bruno’s place with Brugge then leading 2 – 0 from the first half, with goals from Irvin Cardona and Jeremy Taravel but Lierse pulled one back three minutes after Omollo’s introduction through Ivan Yagan.
Xavier Mercier restored Brugge’s two – goal advantage in the 73rd minute and Wesley Vanbelle made it four nine minutes later, putting the game beyond Lierse.
Michael Olunga - Spain
In Spain, Michael Olunga featured for the entire 90 minute, leading the goal hunt for Girona as they toured the capital to face Atletico Madrid in the La Liga clash that ended 1 – 1.
Antoine Griezmann gave Atletico the lead in the 34th minute but Christian Portu levelled matters in the 73rd minute to ensure a share of the spoils which left Girona eighth on the log with 27 points and Atletico second on 43.
McDonald Mariga - Spain
Still in Spain, former Kenyan international McDonald Mariga spent the entire game on the bench as his Real Oviedo side came from a goal down to beat Almeria 2 – 1 in the Spanish second tier clash.
Fidel Chaves scored the opener for Almeria in the 53rd minute but the lead lasted just eight minutes as Jose Verdu Nicolas restored parity and an own goal by Almeria keeper Rene Roman in the 72nd minute sealed it for the hosts.
The win places Oviedo third on the log with 40 points, six behind league leaders Huesca and in contention for promotion to La Liga. Almeria on the other hand, stayed 15th on 26 points after 23 matches.
Josh Lelan - England
In England, in League Two, Kenyan defender Josh Lelan featured for the entire game as his team, Crawley Town’s three – match winning run was halted by Newport County in a 1 – 2 loss that saw Crawley drop to 14th with 36 points as Newport rose to ninth on 45 points.
Brian Mandela – South Africa
In the Premier Soccer League (PSL) in South Africa, Kenyan international Brian Mandela got back to the starting team as his club, Maritzburg United sunk Free State Stars 3 – 0 away from home to rise to fourth on the log on 27 points, just one behind third placed Free State Stars.
All of Maritzburg’s goals came in the second half, with Andrea Fileccia scoring the opener in the 46th minute and Evans Rusike doubled in the 59th before Bandile Shandu put the icing on the cake with a third goal in the 87th minute.
Masud, Abondo – South Africa
The 2017 Kenyan Premier League (KPL) top scorer, Masud Juma was not in the squad as his new side Cape Town City FC defeated Ajax Cape Town 1 – 0 to stay second on 30 points, four behind leaders Mamelodi Sundowns, as Ajax stayed rooted in the relegation zone on 16 points.
Another Kenyan, Ali Abondo was also not in the day’s squad as his team, Bloemfontein Celtic fell 0 – 1 to Bidvest Wits.