After Eliud Kipchoge’s record shuttering run in Vienna, Austria, in which he proved that ‘no human is limited’ by running a marathon under two hours on Saturday, attention now shifts to the Harambee Stars, who face Mozambique in a friendly match today at the Kasarani Stadium.
Stars will also be stepping out against the back drop of their women’s counterparts, the Harambee Starlets, beating Ghana on Tuesday to progress in the 2020 Olympics qualifiers.
The national men’s football team has been in camp since the beginning of the week — preparing for the 4.00pm kick-off match and the head coach Francis Kimanzi believes they are braced for a positive result.
“We are ready to participate tomorrow’s friendly and get a positive result,” Kimanzi was quoted on the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) website.
His captain and Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Victor Wanyama, who missed Stars’ last friendly against Uganda, which ended 1-1, as he was settling with his club after a failed transfer move, echoed Kimanzi’s sentiments.
Wanyama also appealed for fans support saying, “I believe we have had a good session in the camp and are ready to get a positive result. I, therefore, urge fans to show up in large numbers to support and motivate the players.”
Kimanzi altered the squad a bit, roping in fresh blood especially in the goalkeeping department. Patrick Matasi, who has been the first choice keeper for a while now was dropped due to poor form with Ian Otieno of Red Arrows in Zambia and Timothy Odhiambo of Ulinzi Stars being favoured to don the number one jersey.
Nkana FC defender Harun Shakava also returned to the team after a while in the cold.
The Mambas of Mozambique arrived in the country on Friday and had a feel of the Kasarani on Saturday. The team’s last visit to Nairobi was in 2017 when they forced a 1-1 draw against Stars.
In total, Kenya and Mozambique have faced each other three times in the past with each side boasting a win.
Kenyan officials led by centre referee Israel Mpaima will handle the match.
Mpaima will be assisted by Tony Kidiya (First Assistant Referee), Samuel Kuria (Second Assistant Referee) and Andrew Juma (Fourth Official). Peter Kiereini will serve as the Match Commissioner.