Kenyan international midfielder Amos Ekhalie will be in the traveling contingent when his Finnish side IFK Mariehamn tours Poland for the return leg of the UEFA Champions League second qualifying round against Legia Warsaw on Wednesday 19 July and he is hoping for a great outing in the clash.
The midfielder, and his team, made the debut appearance in Europe’s elite club competition on Wednesday 12 July, losing 0 – 3 at home and setting themselves up for a tough encounter in the return leg.
Ekhalie termed it a nice experience featuring in the Champions League and admitted their goose was cooked with missed chances, including one of his that was disallowed and though he admits it will be an uphill task out in Warsaw, he believes they can still give a good account of themselves.
“It was a great atmosphere for us and a game of chances. We had the opportunity to take advantage but we missed our chances then they utilized theirs. I even had a goal but it was ruled offside by the referee.
“We are traveling to Poland on Monday for the return leg on Wednesday and we know the atmosphere to expect there, with their fans. In the end I believe it is a good experience and as we prepare for the return leg, anything is possible but they are the favorites,” he told Soka.
Dafaa red card
While Ekhalie featured full time in the first leg game, another Kenyan, Anthony Clement Dafaa had a Champions League debut to forget, and he will miss the return leg as he was sent off after picking yellow cards in the 56th and 60th minutes.
With the first leg red card, Dafaa became the second Kenyan to be sent off in a Champions League game after Dennis Oliech suffered the same fate with yellow cards in the 82nd and 85th minutes on 19 October 2010 as his team then, AJ Auxerre, lost 1 – 2 to Ajax Amsterdam.