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Musa Otieno dissects why Harambee Stars dropped crucial WCQ points vs Burundi

Saturday, June 8th, 2024 22:12 | By
Harambee Stars training at Bingu National Stadium in Lilongwe, Malawi.
Harambee Stars training at Bingu National Stadium in Lilongwe, Malawi. PHOTO/@Harambee__Stars/X

Retired defender Musa Otieno has pointed out reasons that could have led to Harambee Stars 1-1 World Cup qualifying draw against Burundi on Friday, June 7, 20224.

Despite taking the lead, Kenya allowed the Swallows to fight back and get an equaliser in the second half, thus sharing points in the end in Lilongwe Malawi.

Otieno, a former Tusker and AFC Leopards defender, dissected the game and pointed out what could have cost Kenya.

“It seems like we struggle against sides that are more compact. If you look at the game we played against South Sudan, it was similar. No movement off the ball, wrong passes at this level. We need to up our game.

“You look at the substitutions that were made (Austin Odhiambo and Duke Abuya), and that is the only time the runs were made. That is the situation we need to see in the national team moving forward.

“When Muguna was playing as a 10, we were pulling back a bit, but when Odada was subbed on, we started putting a lot of pressure. The big concern is the set pieces," Otieno said, as quoted by a local publication.

While recalling a game during his playing days against Algeria, Otieno also discussed what must be done going forward.

“There was a time we beat Algeria 3-1, and set-pieces were our key points because those were things that gave us opportunities.

“These are things that should be done every day, not just the last day. The executions and the timing of the runs were off. We used our height because we knew any time we had a corner or set piece, it was our chance to shine," he added.

Firat's take

Otieno's comments came as head coach Engin Firat explained why he thinks the team failed to win maximum points against its CECAFA rivals.

"We have serious problems that are difficult to understand. Today, we missed three players who are not injured because of some mistakes that were made. If even one of them had been on the field, given that we had done all our tactical training with them, we would have definitely won, not 1-0, but by a minimum of 2-0," Firat said.

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