Jesse Were was one of three Kenyans to score in foreign land over the weekend ended Sun 8 Apr 2018. His lone goal handed Zambia's Zesco United a 1-0 win over host Nkana. He joined Masoud Juma who scored in South Africa and Ayub Masika in China Photo credit - Zesco FC
Were on the mark as Kenyan pros activate foreign leagues
By Patrick Korir | Mon 09 Apr, 2018 14:38

The weekend ended Sunday 8 April 2018 saw a long list of Kenyan international players in action for their respective clubs in countries far and wide.

Several players featured for their clubs with mixed results being posted. Results aside, it was an individually good weekend for Masud Juma, Ayub Timbe and particularly Jesse Were who banged the winning goal as Zesco United hit Nkana 1-0 in a Zambian League clash on Sunday. 

Also read Timbe, Masoud on the mark in Saturday action

Masoud Juma, Brian Mandela - South Africa

2017 Kenyan Premier League (KPL) top scorer Masud Juma checked in as a second half substitute to hit a late goal - his maiden PSL goal - that allowed Cape Town City steal a draw against Brian Mandela's Maritzburg in a round 26 tie at Cape Town Stadium on Sunday.

He however did not come up against his Kenyan international Brian Mandela who is still out nursing a knee injury. 

In the same league, Ali Abondo's Bloemfontein Celtic picked a draw against Amazulu at the Dr. Petrus Molemela Stadium also on Sunday. Abondo - who featured just once for Celtic in a Cup game in March against Richards Bay, is yet to feature for his club in the league this season.

Paul Were - Kazakhstan

Out in Central Asia, at the World's largest landlocked counry Kazakhstan, Kenyan speedy winger Paul Were started his third straight Premier League game as his side Kaisar went down 1-0 to host Zhetysu at the Jetisu Stadium Reserve Field.

Were featured for the first 63 minutes before being replaced by 32-year old Vladimir Arzhanov. The latest result leave Kaisar in tenth spot with just a point from four outings and only better than Kyzyl-Zhar and Atyrau who occupy the last two relegation spots.

Lawrence Olum, Handawalla Bwana - USA

In Major League Soccer (MLS) in the USA, Kenyan defender Lawrence Olum started off the bench for Portland Timbers who went down 3-2 away to Orlando City FC at the Orlando City Stadium on Sunday.

Olum, capped four times for Kenya, made his way to the field for Cristhian Paredes in the 64th minute for his third appearance this season, and the first since he saw red - for two yellow cards, in a game against Dallas in late March.

At that point Timbers led 2-0 with a first half goal from Diego Valeri - first half penalty, and from New Zealander Bill Tuiloma in the second half. Timbers were to crumble in the last ten minutes of the game conceding three goals in a seven minute blitz to lose it all together. 

Orlando's charge started with an 80th minute goal from Christopher Mueller that was followed a penalty from Sacha Kljestan and winner from Dom Dwyer.

Timbers are now 11th in the Western Conference log one place ahead of Seattle Sounders, the home to Kenyan-born Handwalla Bwana. Sounders had no fixtures at the weekend and will next face Sporting Kansas in mid April.

Amos Ekhalie, Anthony Dafaa - Finland

On Sunday, 2016 Finland Champions IFK Mariehamn started the 2018 season on a false note as they went down 2-0 away to ROPS at the Rovaniemen Keskuskenttä stadium.

Goals from Lucas Lingman and Simo Roiha in the second half set Rops apart in the duel that saw Ekhalie lineup for Mariehamn for his 187th Veikkasuliiga game since 2009 after he replaced Gabriel Petrovic in the 17th minute.

As Ekhalie's league kicked off, his former team mate Anthony Dafaa now at Haka will have to wait till end of the month to start off the second tier league Ykkonen.

Philipp Mwene - Germany

In the Bundesliga 2 in Germany relegation threatened Kaiserslautern rallied for a 1-1 draw against Jahn Regensburg at the Fritz-Walter-Stadium. In for Kaiserslautern was natural right back Philipp Mwene who was pushed up as a right winger as he collected his 27th league game from 29 outings. Though Austrian-born, Mwene, 24, has Kenyan linkage and is a prospect for Harambee Stars. 

Kaiserslautern sits bottom of the 18-team log with 29 points, five away from safety.

Victor Wanyama - England

On Saturday, Kenyan skipper Victor Wanyama started out for Tottenham Hotspur and lasted for 82 minutes before being subbed by Eric Dier, as his side saw off host Stoke City 2-1 at the Bet365 Stadium.

It was Wanyama's fourth start this season, and 13th overall game, as Spurs consolidated a Champions league fourth spot to sit behind Liverpool's 67 points on goal difference.

McDonald Mariga, Michael Olunga, Ismael Athuman - Spain

In the Spanish leagues, Mariga, Athuman and Olunga had mixed results for Oviedo in LaLiga 2, Fuenlabrada in Segunda B and Girona in LaLiga respectively in games played on Sunday. 

While Girona was handed a 5-0 beating by Real Sociedad to remain eighth in the league, Oviedo picked up an important 1-0 away win over Lugo as Fuenlabrada let go a first half lead to share spoils with host SS Reyes. 

Olunga was sidelined from the game following an injury while Mariga played the full 90 minutes to improve his appearance for the club this season to 11 games. Athuman on his part started out for Fuenlabrada against SS Reyes. 

Jesse Were, David Owino, Anthony Akumu - Zambia

On Sunday, Zambian giants Zesco United preserved a rich history - of not losing to Nkana since 2004, when they dispatched their rivals 1-0 at the Nkana Stadium.

Jesse Were's thunderbolt in the 65th minute separated the two sides to allow Zesco rise to seventh in the 20-team log with as many points from three games.

Were was accompanied in the starting lineup by defender David Owino as Anthony Akumu started off the bench. He was to however make a cameo appearance in added time after replacing Lameck Banda in the 92nd minute.

Still in the same league, more Kenyans will be in action on Wednesday 11 April. Buildcon, home to Kenyan pair Cliffton Miheso and John Makwatta, will face off with Nkana at the Nkana Stadium as Red Arrows, home to Ian Otieno and Andrew Tololwa will be up against Kitwe United on the same day. 

Ayub Masika - China

Kenya's winger per excellence Masika, on loan to Lava Spring from Beijing Rehne, scored his maiden goal - a late consolation as Heilongjiang Lava Spring FC lost a round five Chinese League One tie 2-1 to hosts Zheijiang Green Town at the Yellow Dragon Stadium on Saturday. 

His maiden goal came on a day he was making his first appearance for the club - and he played the full 90 minutes, having missed the first four games into the second tier league. His club sits 13th in the 16-team log with four points. 

Musa Mohammed, Eric Ouma, Kenneth Muguna - Albania

On Saturday, Mohammed and Muguna's Tirana moved ever so close to promotion after seeing off chief challengers Bylis at the Adush Muca Stadium. A Bedir Greca first half  brace moved the club coached by former Gor Mahia coach Ze Maria top of Group B. Both Mohammed and Muguna were however not part of the match day squad. The club will be up against Pogradeci on Saturday. 

In the same second tier, former Gor Mahia left back Eric Ouma, who is now at Group A leaders Kastrioti Krujë, is soon expected to debut for the club. That could be on Saturday as the club invites Besëlidhja Lezhë.

Upcoming

David Ochieng, Eric Johanna - Sweden

Away from the weekend, Kenyan followers will be tuned to the Swedish top league - the Allsvenskan when Brommapojkarna, home to Kenyan internationals David Cheche Ochieng and Eric Johanna takes on Häcken at the Grimsta IP, Stockholm starting 8pm EAT.

Both hope to debut in the league having joined the club in the off-season. During the opening game on 2 April, the club fell 2-1 to host Norrköping. While Cheche was unused from the bench, Johanna missed out on the match day squad all together.

Bernard Mwarome - Germany

Augsburg II, that features in the Regionaliga in Germany will be up against 1860 Rosenheim this coming Saturday in a round 20 clash.

20 year old Mwarome who has so far featured in 19 of the clubs 29 games played, the last being a 90 minute show last Friday in a 2-0 win over Buchbach, will hope to increase his league count in that game. 

Should he choose to, Mwarome, a defensive midfielder, is a prospect for Kenya. 

Daniel Anyembe - Denmark

Danish second tier side Esbjerg, home to another Kenyan prospect Anyembe, a 19 year old midfielder, will be in action on Saturday to Thisted in a round 26 clash. 

The youngster has so far featured in 14 of 25 games played so far - seven being starts, his last game being on Tuesday as his side knocked out Nykobing 5-2. 

Esbjerg is hoping for an immediate bounce back to top flight football having been relegated at the close of last season. The team is currently placed second in the 12-team log with 43 points, just one behind leaders Vendsyssel.

Abud Omar - Bulgaria

After a 1-1 draw with Cherno More on Thursday, Slavia Sofia, home to Kenya's full back Abud Omar will be next up against Botev Plovdiv this coming Friday. Omar who has missed league games since a 1-0 fall to Vereya in early March will be looking to return to the lineup for the upcoming game. 

Alwyn Tera, John Macharia, Amos Nondi - Georgia

The three gentlemen in Georgia will be back active later in the week. Saburtallo II, current placing for former Kenya U20 skipper John Macharia will be up against third tier side leaders Gori on Thursday. The parent Saburtalo, the current top division leaders, and club that houses Tera will be away to giants Dinamo Tbilisi on Sunday - the same day Nondi's Dila travels to bottom placed Samtredia. 

Patrick Korir

Twitter: @tipkorir

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