Burly City Stars midfielder says he is now ripe for Kenyan Premier League action
Nairobi City Stars midfielder Newton Ochieng’ has declared that he is now ready for more action in the Football Kenya Federation Premier League matches after putting up a masterclass performance in the four games he has featured in so far.
Ochieng’ was a pillar in the Simba wa Nairobi midfield with his superb show convincing coach Nicholas Muyoti to name him in the four match days’ squad. This was before picking up an injury ahead of City Stars game with Nzoia Sugar on December 17.
“The Kenyan Premier League has so far been fair enough for me. At first, it was challenging, But the trick has been to understand the (teams’) way of play, players, and knowing the exact role to play,” Ochieng’ said.
“I have come to learn that the Kenyan Premier League is about strategies because it’s a level where you are competing with big names all of whom have experience,” he added.
The former Upper Hill School skipper’s journey in the topflight league began on November 20 in the season opener against Bidco United at the Nyayo National Stadium where he came on as a second half substitute.
Muyoti then named him in the starting line-up against Tusker on November 27. Ochieng’ was again fielded in the ties against FC Talanta and Posta Rangers also as a substitute.
Ochieng joined Nairobi City Stars from third-tier side Vapor Sports in the last transfer window as Muyoti was beefing up his squad after mass exodus of 14 players who found greener pastures.
On December 17, as Ochieng’ was psyched up in a pre-match warm up at Sudi Stadium and ready to face Nzoia Sugar, he got a knock which not only kept him out of the match but the next four games. In his absence, Nairobi City Stars faced Kariobangi Sharks, AFC Leopards, Vihiga Bullets and Sofapaka.
“The injury came at a bad time, just before the Nzoia game forcing me out of the squad for a few weeks. I’m now back to light training and in due course I will be back to serve the team on the pitch,” he said.
City Star put to an end a string of poor performance when they beat Sofapaka 2-1 last weekend to pick their first win of the season. On Wednesday, Simba wa Nairobi lost by a solitary goal to KCB who are jointly top of the table with Nzoia Sugar after 10 rounds of matches.