Broke Gor coach bathed in pool, ate matumbo ya kibanda

Kerr feeding at a roadside kiosk.

Former Gor Mahia coach Dylan Kerr, who recently relocated to South Africa, lived in a rented house in Nairobi’s Kileleshwa estate, but which had no electricity or water, The Nairobian can reveal.

During his 16-month stay at the helm of the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) champions, the Briton was for some months forced to swim in the morning as the only means of bathing his 51-year old body.

At times, he lacked bus fare to the team’s training grounds in Eastlands and was forced to jog from Kileleshwa to Camp Toyoyo in Jericho, creating the illusion of a fitness-conscious mzungu.

Gor has since been locked out of Camp Toyoyo over unpaid fees.

For food, the roadside vibanda at Yahya Centre came in handy for the man who led K’Ogalo to win two back-to-back KPL championships, and a remarkable record in continental competitions.  

Never mind, Ker in the Luo language means ‘the President’ and he often referred to himself as Gor Mahia president in promotional video, like the one aired ahead of the team’s trip to Goodison Park in England where they suffered a 4-0 thrashing by  Everton.

Kerr confirmed his tribulations through text message correspondence with The Nairobian after leaving K’Ogalo in mid-November for the Black Leopards FC of South Africa.

Gor Mahia organising Secretary Judith Nyangi revealed that “Kerr is the only coach who could have persevered at Gor Mahia. Imagine a coach staying in a house without electricity and water, and having to bathe in a swimming pool because of rent arrears,” Nyangi wrote, in the wake of Kerr’s resignation.

Kerr told The Nairobian that: “Yes. I had no electricity and water for one month in the house. My salaries had also delayed. So, I swam because my apartment had a gym and a swimming pool,” he said, adding that some club officials ignored his emails.

Kerr moved to Kenya from Tanzania where he was coaching Simba FC in 2016.   “Sometimes I walked and ran to work,” he lamented.

Many times, Kerr was spotted in a Kilimani kibanda near Yaya Centre. It’s probably because that’s what he could afford, though he often explained that he had fallen in love with ‘local food’.

“It’s true I did eat in street kiosks. But that is because the best food is cooked by real people and is fantastic. Matumbo, ugali, omena, chapati, beef...you name it. It was always perfectly prepared,” he said.

But shockingly, the former Gor coach told The Nairobian that he never had a written contract throughout the period he was with K’Ogalo. 

 “I can confirm that I used to be paid my salary and bonuses, but we never had a written contract. I didn’t have a contract with Gor Mahia,” he said.

  “Gor Mahia has good players who can die for the club, regardless of any kind of situation, as long as things are done the right way. The incoming coach (his successor) only needs to be good and honest,” he said, adding that, “I am ready and willing to help him at any time should he need my advice.”

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