Everton's Wayne Rooney shoots to score past Gor Mahia during a friendly match in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on July 13, 2017. PHOTO | REUTERSEverton's Wayne Rooney shoots to score past Gor Mahia during a friendly match in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on July 13, 2017. PHOTO | REUTERS
By DAVID KWALIMWA

The highly billed friendly match between Kenyan champions Gor Mahia against English side Everton is unlikely to be played this year, Nairobi News understands.

The match was to be played either last month or this month – a period coinciding with the pre-season period for European clubs – at Goodison Park in Liverpool, England.

The English club had in early June confirmed as much on its official social media pages.

Giant gaming firm SportPesa, which incidentally is the jersey sponsors for both clubs, are involved in organizing this match. The firm’s chief executive Ronald Karauri told to Nairobi News arrangements are ongoing and an announcement will be made soon.

“We are working with Everton to get the best possible date and will announce in the coming week,” Karauri said.

However, with the English Premier League officially kicking off on August 10, a day before Everton face Wolves away in their first match of the campaign, sources has revealed that it is highly unlikely the Merseyside club will schedule a friendly match in between the grueling league season.

A glance at Everton’s fixtures show the team will play 20 competitive matches between now and the end of this year.

GRUELING RUN

Worse, Gor Mahia too, face a grueling run until the end of the year, with several competitive matches lined up in the Kenyan Premier League, FKF SportPesa Shield and money-spinning Caf Confederation Cup.

There have also been reports that the Everton technical bench are not very keen on this fixture, which comes a year after the English side emerged 2-1 victors in a first ever meeting between the two teams in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

Gor Mahia beat Tanzania’s Simba 2-0 in Nakuru in the SportPesa Super Cup played in Nakuru in June to earn the right to play Everton.

The Kenyan team also drew 0-0 with English Championship side Hull City in another friendly staged in Nairobi in May.

Everton‘s Wayne Rooney shoots to score past Gor Mahia during a friendly match in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on July 13, 2017. PHOTO | REUTERS