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Walusimbi couldn’t help but fall in love with K’Ogallo

He has been one of the stand out performers at Gor Mahia. Whenever he touches the ball, even in the most risky areas—the six yard box—there is that rare sigh of relief from the terraces.

From intelligent runs, assured passes, and the easy manner in which he weaves past opponents makes him a joy to watch.

That is the kind of play and impact that Ugandan international defender Godfrey Walusimbi has brought to the Kenyan league champions since he joined Gor Mahia in January.

The 24-year-old, who thrives in the left full back position, can also play at right back, a trait that has made him one of the pillars of Bobby Williamson’s side.

The two worked together in Uganda Cranes, where Williamson, 52, last coached before opting for the K’Ogalo dugout.

In an interview with NairobiNews, Walusimbi revealed that settling at Gor Mahia has not been much of a task as he knows what Williamson expects of him.

“He (Williamson) has coached me; I know what he expects of every player. I know his style of play like the back of my hands, which has made my settling in the team very easy,” he said while also giving his Ugandan teammates credit for helping him settle in Kenya.

Ugandan imports

Gor has a large pool of Ugandan imports including the dreadlocked midfield general  Godfrey ‘Baba’ Kizito, who arrived at the same time as Walusimbi, assassin Dan Sserunkuma and the gigantic centre-half  Israel Emuge all of whom played under Williamson at Uganda Cranes.

“The joy of playing in the Kenyan league is guided by the fact that it’s competitive. It’s much organised and matches are beamed live on Supersport, which also increases a player’s value.

“In Uganda there is not much to play for. As a player, you are not only looking forward to match day but also aiming to move to the highest level, something I could not realise in Ugandan league. The league competition back home is like a village football,” said Walusimbi. 

Born on July 3, 1989, a second born in family of five (two girls and three boys), the mohawk donning defender was always fascinated with football from a tender age, but little did he know that it would later become his career.

It was  while at St Mary’s Kitende High School, a football giant in Uganda, that he got immersed in the game; impressing in inter-schools competitions before joining his first professional club  SC Villa at  16.

Since then, he has represented several clubs including Bunamwaya SC, CS Don Bosco as well as consolidating his position in the Ugandan national team.

Europe dream

“All I want is to give my best and go as far as possible. I dream of playing in Europe but in the meantime my biggest aim is to help Gor Mahia win medals, moreso the league title,” he said.

Apart from football, the soft spoken defender is enjoying his stay in Kenya.

He has already fallen in love with fish and ugali. Walusimbi is quick to point out that the friendly Kenyan weather makes him feel at home.

“I enjoy it, the weather is not different from Uganda’s and the people are social.”

His eye catching performances earned him praise from Esperance de Tunisian head coach Ruud Krol, who described him as one of the most dangerous players at Gor when the two sides prepared for a first leg African champions match. 

Gor, however, suffered a humiliating 8-2 aggregate loss to the Tunisian side.

How about his future club, I ask? “Not at the moment, I have favourite clubs in Europe but it would be inappropriate to mention them,” said Walusimbi. 

When not playing, Walusimbi spends his free time listening to music or watching football.