Shikanda upbeat as Leopards unveil new signings


Shikanda upbeat as Leopards unveil new signings
AFC Leopards signings pose for a group photo on Sunday during their unveiling.PHOTO/Courtesy

In Summary

  • Kenya Premier League powerhouse AFC Leopards on Sunady unveiled  seven new signings as they aim to stage improved performances in the 2019/20 season.
  • The new arrivals are a sign of intent by club president Dan Shikanda to redeem the 12-time KPL champions who have been a far cry from their glory days in recent seasons.
  • Former Police FC and Kyovu Sports midfield maestro Vincent Habamahoro who was among those unveiled has signed a two-year contract with the club and will be expected to deploy his impressive work rate to revive the team’s performances.

Kenya Premier League powerhouse AFC Leopards on Sunady unveiled  seven new signings as they aim to stage improved performances in the 2019/20 season.

The new arrivals are a sign of intent by club president Dan Shikanda to redeem the 12-time KPL champions who have been a far cry from their glory days in recent seasons.

Former Police FC and Kyovu Sports midfield maestro Vincent Habamahoro who was among those unveiled has signed a two-year contract with the club and will be expected to deploy his impressive work rate to revive the team’s performances.

Also joining him in the midfield is Tresor Ndikumana who previously plied his trade for Rwanda Premier League outfits Jeca FC, Union Sporting FC, Lydia Ludic, and Amajagu FC.

Capped 12 times by the Burundi national team, Tresor scored nine goals for Amagafu FC and he will hope to replicate this form at the den. He will wear jersey number eight.

Malian season marksman Ismaila Diarra also joins the team’s rank having previously played for  CA Bordj Bou Arréridj, CO de Bamako, Al-Ismaily, Azam F.C, Chabab Atlas Khénifra, Rayon Sports F.C, and Daring Club Motema Pembe

His experience will be important to Ingwe  as they aim to turn a corner from their previous failures.

Seasoned centre-half Soter Kayumba returns to the den on a two-year contract having previously played for Etincelles FC and AS Kigali.

He also has had a spell with 2009 Kenya Premier League champions Sofapaka.

Former Nzoia Sugar centre-forward Hansel Ochieng has signed a two-year contract with the club. He nicked seven goals for Nzoia last season.

His nomadic career saw him turn for other KPL outfits like Nairobi Stima, Sofapaka FC and Thika United.

In a bid to tighten its porous defense, the team has added a seasoned centre-back in Robert Mudenyu to its ranks. Mudenyu scored three times for Sony Sugar last season. He also played for Muhoroni Youth FC and Eldoret based Raiply FC

Ugandan international goalkeeper Benjamin Ochan joins the team’s goalkeeping department on a one-year contract and will wear jersey number 99.

He has also represented AGF Aarhus, Bloemfontein Celtic, Villa SC Victoria University SC, KCCA FC, and Kabwe Warriors in the past.

Speaking on his official Facebook handle, club president Dan Shikanda termed the signings as a statement that the team intends to upgrade its performances.

“Today we are unveiling seven new players who are joining the den. We believe that their presence in the team will give us a cutting edge as we embark on the new season.”

The team will remain in Mumias for one week before returning to Nairobi where they will pitch camp for two more weeks after which they will embark on preseason friendlies.

The friendly will help assess the gelling of the team.

He also revealed that the team’s recruiting spree will continue as they aim to replace those who exited the club last season.

“We still expect two or three players to join our club since we lost three players two of whom move to Europe and one is seeking a release to join a local club.”

He has rallied the team’s faithful to stand by them as they embark on an unprecedented revamp.

“We are focused and determined, a team that will not only compete in the new season but also win the league. We need your support all of you. Come and join hands with us so that we can make a team all of you will be proud of.

“AFC should be winning its matches. We should not be honoring our matches but play to win.

We are confident that we will build a team for the future. The new players are here with us and the preparations are also going on well. Am also determined to ensure that we have a strong team,”Shikanda said.

The team released 10 players at the end of last season.

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Story By Dan Ogega
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