Kimanzi out to retain Senior Challenge title


Kimanzi out to retain Senior Challenge title

In Summary

  • As Harambee Stars jetted out of the country on Friday afternoon, head coach Francis Kimanzi expressed his confidence the team will bring back home the CECAFA Senior Challenge title.
  • Stars claimed the title in 2017 when the Championship was last held, in Kenya, and Kimanzi observes he is comfortable with the preparations he had with the current team over the past one week for the competition, set for Uganda.

As Harambee Stars jetted out of the country on Friday afternoon, head coach Francis Kimanzi expressed his confidence the team will bring back home the CECAFA Senior Challenge title.

Stars claimed the title in 2017 when the Championship was last held, in Kenya, and Kimanzi observes he is comfortable with the preparations he had with the current team over the past one week for the competition, set for Uganda.

“We have a chance of defending our title. We will, of course, be under pressure but that is the nature of football,” said Kimanzi.

The tactician, who is still in his early spell of his tenure as Stars boss since the exit of his predecessor Sebastien Migne, wants to expand his pool of players for the senior team through the Kampala fiesta.

Mathare United FC coach Francis Kimanzi reacts against AFC Leopards SC during their Sportpesa premier league match at Kasarani Stadium in September 27, 2017. Match ende 0-0. Photo/Oliver Ananada/www.sportpicha.com

“This tournament is also an avenue for us to give new players a chance. We have AFCON and World Cup Qualifiers coming up next year so it’s important we see who we can involve in the senior team,” he added.

Kenya has been pooled in Group B alongside Tanzania, Sudan, and Zanzibar. The first match will be against Tanzania on Sunday, December 8, 2019, in Kampala.

Notably, Kenya fell Zanzibar in post-match penalties in the 2017 final at the Kenyatta Stadium Machakos, to lift the trophy then under former coach Paul Putt.

Uganda, Burundi, Somalia, Djibouti, and Eritrea have all been pooled in Group A.

Top two teams in each group will proceed to the semifinals, slated for Tuesday, December 17, 2019, in Kampala after which the final and the third-place play-off will be played on Thursday, December 19, 2019.

Stars final squad

Goalkeepers

Timothy Odhiambo (Ulinzi Stars), Samuel Odhiambo (Western Stima)

Defenders

Johnstone Omurwa (Wazito), Joash Onyango (Gor Mahia), Daniel Sakari (Kariobangi Sharks), Andrew Juma (Mathare United), David Owino (Mathare United), Samuel Olwande (Kariobangi Sharks)

Midfielders

Anthony Wambani (Vasalunds IF), Roy Okal (Mathare United), Kenneth Muguna (Gor Mahia), Musa Masika (Wazito), Abdallah Hassan (Bandari), Moses Mudavadi (Kakamega Homeboyz), Lawrence Juma (Gor Mahia), Whyvone Isuza (AFC Leopards), Kevin Kimani (Mathare United), Cliffton Miheso (Gor Mahia)

Forwards

Oscar Wamalwa (Ulinzi Stars), Timothy Otieno (Tusker)

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