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Is the Wazito FC Fairytale Coming To An End?

wazito fc
Wazito FC. [Courtesy]

When flashy businessman Ricardo Badoer acquired Wazito FC through Badoer Investment Limited three years ago he pledged to splash out with the aim of making it “Africa’s most successful club.”

Only a season back, the club had been relegated to the second tier National Super League from the Kenyan Premier League with lack of finances their Achilles heel, but with Ricardo’s flowing cash, they were certain of making a quick return.

“We have already invested in good players and we are certain to win the NSL next year,” said Badoer.

This came to pass, however, the journey at the top has been rocky if not frustrating, especially for Badoer, who badly wanted to win the league immediately.

On several occasions following a loss, the Dubai-based investor would go on a twitter-rant calling players unprintable words as he vented his frustrations.

Read: Good Riddance! Wazito FC Kick-Out Players Who “Lacked Self Respect

But three seasons down the line, and no major trophy to guarantee them continental football, he has embraced a more diplomatic tone when addressing players on Twitter.

Wazito’s life in the top-flight has also been marred by transfer missteps that have proved costly with Fifa, the world’s football body, slapping them with a three-window transfer ban and Ksh6 million fine for wrongful termination of six players in April this year.

Since the club’s dreams were anchored on Badoer’s deep pockets, the financial difficulties occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic has hit the club hard.

According to a close source, who did want to identify himself for fear of being reprimanded for speaking to the media, the club has struggled to pay salaries to players since last year.

“The truth is the boss (Ricardo Badoer) is currently struggling financially, that is the reality as much as he’s putting on a brave face.”

Read Also: Wazito FC Part Ways With Coach Stewart Hall

Without giving much information, Wazito FC Chief Executive Officer, Dennis Gicheru confirmed that “we’re late with salaries”, but “we’ll sort it out.”

Another sign that all is not rosy is the folding up of Madgoat TV, the online channel that was to air Wazito FC content until Football Kenya Federation, FKF signed a broadcast deal for KPL with StarTimes, kicking it out of business.

“We were not even allowed to shoot our own games, making it hard for us to attract partners as our aim was to be self-sustainable,” the anonymous source said.

Madgoat recently laid off some staff, but are yet to pay them.

With StartTimes ending their seven-year deal with the now defunct FKF prematurely, there’s optimism Madgoat TV could resume operations in January, however, Wazito’s grand plans remain uncertain.

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Written by Bonface Osano

Communication And Media Student. Sports Writer.

Email: news@kahawatungu.com

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