Up to 10,000 fans will be allowed to attend the Caf Confederation Cup match between Gor Mahia and Al-Ahly Merowe on Sunday, the Football Kenya Federation Premier League side has announced.
It will be the first club game in Kenya that fans will be allowed to attend since they were banned from sporting facilities last year due to the Covid-19 protocols put in place by the state in order to mitigate the spread of the virus.
“Up to 10,000 fans would be allowed to watch our second leg of the Caf match against Al-Ahly set for Sunday at Nyayo Stadium after the ministry of health accepted the club’s request and the federation also approved it,” Gor Mahia announced on Friday.
The green light to have the fans at the stadium has come just days after Gor Mahia engaged in their 90th Mashemeji Derby against AFC Leopards. K’Ogalo emerged winners – courtesy of a goal by Boniface Omondi – and registered their 31st Premier League derby win against the rivals.
Although on Tuesday, as Kenya celebrated its Mashujaa Day [the Heroes Day], President Uhuru Kenyatta announced the lifting of the nationwide curfew, but the Ministries of Health and Sports have not given a directive on whether they will soon allow fans to start attending all the matches.
The Premier League started on September 26 and three games have now been played and as was the case with the previous season, no fans have been allowed to watch those games.
Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards, who have had to struggle with financial issues, have often been at the forefront calling for the stadium ban to be lifted as their fans’ contributions – via matchday tickets – is one of their major sources of money.
The 19-times Premier League winners – who were given a bye in the preliminary round will host Al-Ahly Merowe after picking up a 3-1 win in Cairo six days ago.
Samuel Onyango, Benson Omala and Jules Ulimwengu were K’Ogalo’s scorers in an encounter they had to fight back after going behind in the first half.
Tusker are Kenya’s representatives in the Caf Champions League and faced Egypt’s Premier League champions on October 16 without fans.