Okoko desperate to turn around Rutsiro’s fortunes

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Okoko desperate to turn around Rutsiro’s fortunes
Okoko desperate to turn around Rutsiro’s fortunes

Africa-Press – Rwanda. Relegation-threatened Rutsiro FC head coach Godfroid Okoko has made a rallying call on his players to show professional attitude to pull themselves out of their current malaise.

The Burundi tactician cut a frustrated figure after his side suffered yet another league defeat during their 2-0 loss against Police on Saturday, December 3, at Umuganda Stadium.

It was Rutsiro’s fourth consecutive defeat which hence left them ranked 13th on the league table with 10 points, just three points clear of the relegation zone.

Okoko, who signed a two-year deal at Rutsiro last week, admits that his players need to improve in terms of attitude and mentality for them to avoid relegation.

“We are in a difficult situation and I don’t blame anyone. The team has had a very poor start and I am here to build a strong team that can beat any team in the league,” said Okoko.

Rutsiro have so far registered only one victory in the last 12 league matches while they have also drawn seven times.

Saturday’s defeat piled more pressure on Okoko’s men who last won a league match in September when they defeated Rwamagana City 1-0 before drawing seven matches in a row.

Okoko replaced Feruzi Haruna who left the club due to poor performance. He was tasked to transform the club into a competitive team ready to finish among the top eight in the 2022/23 Rwanda Premier League season.

“We are trying to find momentum which we would have done before but I am confident things will get back to normal soon.” He said.

Despite the club’s torrid form in recent days, Okoko insists he is only focused on building a team determined to challenge any time for the remainder of the season and hence avoid relegation.

“It’s too early to say Rutsiro are doomed to be relegated as some are suggesting because, for now, nobody knows how the league will end. We still have matches to play,” Okoko noted.

“There are five or six teams in the relegation fight, and Gicumbi is just among them, so the burden is on us to do what we are supposed to do to stay in the national league, and I trust my men can achieve it,” he added.

Okoko is not new in Rwandan football, having previously coached La Jeunesse, Gicumbi FC, Amagaju FC and Mukura VS.

Known for his hard work and resilience, the Burundian helped Mukura avoid relegation where he took them from the bottom of the 2011/12 league table and guided them to second place.

A year later, he joined La Jeunesse and helped the club finish sixth, the best position in their top flight league history.

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