Harambee Stars custodian Patrick Matasi is guarded on his club future amidst speculation that several clubs are interested in his signature after heroic performances for the national football team at the Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt.
The Stars were bundled out of the tourney at the group stage having lost to Senegal (3-0), Algeria (2-0) and winning 3-2 against Tanzania, but Matasi was one of the success stories of the Stars campaign.
He particularly shone against Senegal’s Lions of Teranga, with a string of saves in the first half denying Sadio Mane a penalty, but in an interview with the Citizen Digital on Monday after making an appearance on Citizen TV’s Sporty Monday Programme, the former AFC Leopards goalie couldn’t let the cat out of the bag as far as his future career is concerned.
“Right now I am on my vacation after Afcon. I came directly to Kenya so I’m waiting for communication from my club to know when we will be heading back to camp,” Matasi who turns out for Ethiopia’s top-tier club St Georges said.
Relishing the Afcon moments, Matasi said he was happy to have been in the squad that went to Egypt, and that he was looking forward to another opportunity to fly the Kenyan flag in Africa’s premier tournament.
“It was my first time to play in the Cup of Nations, it was a good experience and if we play the qualifiers very well, we will have an opportunity to play in the tournament again,” he relished.
Having played in the Kenya Premier League, turning out for among others AFC Leopards and Posta Rangers, Matasi admitted there is a distinction in the KPL as compared to the Ethiopian Premier League, terming the former as “more physical”.
“Kenyan league is more of physique and hard work and as a player you have to run even as a goalkeeper but Ethiopian league is more tactical and working with the ball,” he observed.
At the same time Matasi has called upon the federation to look far from the normal FIFA calendar and organize friendlies for the national team to expand on the team’s exposure. According to him, tournaments such as Hero Intercontinental Cup played in India in June 2018 need to be organized to market Kenyan players abroad. He also tipped Harambee Stars to do well in the upcoming CHAN tournament.
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