Karim Abdul Nikiema: Why I signed for Kenya champions Gor Mahia |

The 27-year-old reveals how he ended up joining K’Ogalo from Armenia at the start of the 2020-21 top-flight campaign

Gor Mahia midfielder Karim Abdul Nikiema has explained the reason he ended up signing for the FKF Premier League champions.

The Burkina Faso midfielder was among the new signings at K’Ogalo at the start of the 2020-21 season and he arrived at the club from Armenia. Having featured for the club in a number of league matches, Nikiema has revealed it was coach Carlos Manuel Vaz Pinto who enticed him to join the giants.

“I came to Gor Mahia because of Coach Vaz Pinto,” Nikiema told the club’s official website. “He was my coach at Saint George of Ethiopia before I moved to Armenia.

“But, it’s a new challenge here and I am ready to do my best and help this big club achieve the best.”

On how he has settled in Kenya and what he likes doing apart from playing football, Nikiema said: “Life is okay…Kenya is a Pan-African country with many foreigners but I am not really an outgoing person…I am an introvert so apart from training, I am always home playing PS games or watching some movies.”

On how he rates the Kenyan league, Nikiema explained: “The league is really competitive, there are a lot of good teams and good players.

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“The toughest situation I have faced since I landed in Kenya, mmmmh…I must say the weather because, at the beginning, it was a little hard to adjust.”

On his toughest match since joining Gor Mahia, Nikiema picked the opening clash against Nzoia Sugar which they lost 2-1 by stating: “That was my first game and we lost 2-1 against Nzoia. That was a hard game for me because of the high altitude…I had difficulties in breathing.

“There is pressure in all positions in the team because all players want to be in the starting line-up but it’s good because it helps us to improve for better.”

On the lockdown situation and how he is handling the situation, the 27-year-old said:” Since the lockdown situation, I have been doing some home workout every day to maintain the form. Even without football activates, we just have to do our individual training to keep fit.”

The top-flight was halted with Gor Mahia lying seventh on the 18-team table with 22 points from 14 matches while Tusker are at the top with 36 points from 16 matches.

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