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Gor Mahia

Gor Mahia coach Harrison has Covid-19, yet to return from UK

09:49 GMT+3 06/01/2022
Englishman Mark Harrison and Sam Ochola of Gor Mahia.
The 61-year-old is reportedly down with Covid-19 and this is the reason he missed the team’s top-flight fixture against Nzoia Sugar

Gor Mahia coach Mark Harrison is yet to return from his Christmas holidays after he contracted Covid-19 while in the UK, GOAL can exclusively reveal.

The 61-year-old tactician was allowed to travel to the United Kingdom to join his family and friends for the festive period but while he was preparing to return as planned on December 27, he contracted Covid-19.

Harrison was missing in action on Wednesday as Gor Mahia battled to a 1-1 draw against Nzoia Sugar in an FKF Premier League fixture at Sudi Stadium.

K’Ogalo official Omondi Aduda has confirmed to GOAL the reason Harrison missed the game and when he will probably link up with the team.

‘Harrison contracted Covid back home’

“Harrison contracted Covid-19 back home because we had allowed him to go for holiday and was due to return on December 27,” Aduda told GOAL on Thursday.

“He got the Covid-19 attack while he was preparing to travel back and he is now isolating for 14 days before he starts plans to travel to Kenya.”

Asked if the coach has communicated when he will likely return, Aduda said: “Isolation takes 14 days, so we are waiting from December 27 for 14 days, he is the one who told us he had contracted Covid, and there are certain things that we cannot force or control.

“Assuming that he finishes isolation, isolation alone does not cure, so he must wait to be cleared by the doctors, some of those things are not in our hands, or his [Harrison] hands, we must be patient and wait for the day he comes back.”

On whether the club is certain he will return to honour his contract, Aduda explained: “We signed a contract of two years with Harrison, we are the ones who gave him a ticket to go home as per the contract we signed for him to go for the Christmas break.

“We agreed on when he was supposed to come back but unfortunately he was attacked by Omicron, which is currently ravaging anybody across the world, and you know how it is affecting many people back in the UK, so that is the situation.”

‘I gather Wendo is looking for a club’

Recent reports have also indicated the former league champions are facing a mass exodus of players during the January-February transfer window with Burundi star Jules Ulimwengu, midfielder Ernest Wendo and striker Benson Omalla among those seeking greener pastures.

Addressing the issue, Aduda said: “Jules [Ulimwengu] got permission from the club because his fiance was pregnant and expecting a kid and I have the information they have delivered a bouncing baby girl.

“Ulimwengu had permission from the club, and it is the club which catered for his ticket to travel to Burundi, what rumours are those?”

On Wendo’s situation, Aduda said: “Wendo, I gather he is looking for a club, he could be having his issues but nothing official has come to us, while Omalla has a four-year contract, where do you want him to go? He went home for Christmas and we are expecting him back.”

In the absence of Harrison, assistant coach Sammy Omollo took charge of the team against the Sugar Millers as they failed to win their fourth straight match in the top-tier.