Harambee Stars begins World Cup Qualifiers preps

 

The national soccer team Harambee Stars began in earnest preparations for the forthcoming World Cup qualifiers at Kenya Police Sacco Stadium,Nairobi.

Head Coach Engin Firat named a squad of 25 players but noticeably absent from the list is captain Michjael Olunga.

Kenya is set to face Burundi on June 7, 2024, before playing  reigning Africa Cup of Nations Champions  Ivory Coast, on June 11, 2024.

Kenya has so far managed  a total of 3 points from a possible six after losing to Gabon in their group F opener before beating Seychelles in their second match.

Harambee Stars lies third in the pool, 3 points off leaders Ivory Coast and second placed Gabon. Burundi Gambia and Seychelles are ranked 4th-6th respectively.

 

Due to unavailability of CAF approved Stadia the two qualifier Football Kenya Federation,FKF has indicated the matches will be played in Lilongwe Malawi.

Both Moi International Sports Centre Kasarani and Nyayo National Stadium are undergoing renovations as they are expected to stage the 2024 African Nations Championship,CHAN in September.

Kenya alongside her east African neighbors: Tanzania and Uganda will also play host to the 2027 Africa Cup of Nations finals.

Engin Firat has named both experienced, regulars and new comers to his 25 man provisional squad

Among the new faces is Kenya Police defender Brian Okoth, who is enjoying a season to remember in Kenyan premier League.

Gor Mahia’s Austine Odhiambo, who has the highest number of assists in the FKF Premier League has also been named in the team and is in line for his first cap.

Maiden call ups also include Tobias Knost, who plies his trade with  Germany’s third tier side  SV Verl and Bruce Kamau, who features for Perth Glory in Australia.

Adam Wilson, who plays for Bradford City in England, has also earned a maiden national team call-up.

Meanwhile Duke Abuya and Elvis Rupia  return to the fold after missing the team’s last matches : the  four-nation tournament in Malawi.

The squad is set to depart for Malawi on June 2, 2024.

Provisional Squad

Goalkeepers

Patrick Matasi (Kenya Police), Byrne Odhiambo (Bandari), Boniphas Munyasa (Muranga Seal), Ian Otieno (Zesco, Zambia)

Defenders

Johnstone Omurwa (Estrela, Portugal), Alphonse Omija (Dhofar-Oman), Amos Nondi (Ararat, Armenia), Brian Okoth (Kenya Police), Abud Omar (Kenya Police), Tobias Knost (SV Verl, Germany)

Midfielders

John Ochieng (Zanaco, Zambia), Eric Johanna (UTA, Romania), Adam Wilson (Bradford City, England), Anthony Akumu (Unattached), Kenneth Muguna (Kenya Police), Kaycie Odhiambo (AFC Leopards), Chrispine Erambo (Tusker), Rooney Onyango (Gor Mahia), Ayub Timbe (Sabail, Azeberijan), Duke Abuya (IHEFU, Tanzania), Bruce Kamau (Perth Glory, Australia)

Forwards

John Avire (El Sekka El Hadid SC, Egypt), Austine Odhiambo (Gor Mahia), Benson Omala (Gor Mahia), Elvis Rupia (IHEFU, Tanzania)

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