Stars to pitch camp in France ahead of AFCON as Migne hopes for better year
- While the phenomenal journey of Harambee Stars qualification to the 2019 African Cup of Nations finals after a 15-year hiatus has been the highlight story of 2018, head coach Sebastian Migne says more can be achieved this year, if proper planning is put into place.
- Stars, for the first time in 15 years, will battle it out for the continental honours in Egypt when Africa's premier football show gets underway in June, and the French man says more can be achieved.
While the phenomenal journey of Harambee Stars qualification to the 2019 African Cup of Nations finals after a 15-year hiatus has been the highlight story of 2018, head coach Sebastian Migne says more can be achieved this year, if proper planning is put into place.
Stars, for the first time in 15 years, will battle it out for the continental honours in Egypt when Africa’s premier football show gets underway in June, and the French man says more can be achieved.
Stars made it to the showpiece thanks to a turn-around in their fortunes after losing their opening match away to Sierra Leone, before thumping Ghana 1-0 in Nairobi, followed by an impressive barren draw away against Ethiopia’s Walya Antelopes whom they beat 3-0 in the return match in Nairobi.
The suspension of Sierra Leone meant that the Group F only had three teams left and with the Stars topping the pool on seven points, they sealed a slot to the showpiece, the outcome of their final qualifier match away to Ghana notwithstanding.
And speaking to Citizen Digital in Mombasa after the Stars were picked as the 2018 SOYA Team of the Year, a livid Migne said: “With early preparations the 2018 success can be improved on this year (2019). All stakeholders should make sure none fails in their bit, as we progress with the bigger agenda which is Afcon.
” At the beginning of 2018, no one could bet on Stars, only one crazy man who believed in me (Nick Mwendwa) and we are now firmly in Egypt. This is just a little evidence we can do more, if we are committed to our vision,” the Frenchman reflected .
The former Congo coach is now tracking specific key players with Kenyan roots playing in Europe, to beef up his squad for Afcon as confirmed by Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Chief Executive Officer Robert Muthomi.
“We are pitching camp in France in May as we gear up for Afcon. The weather there will match what we should expect in Egypt. We are waiting for the Afcon draw to be done after the last round of qualifiers to identify the teams we play for friendlies. We want high profile friendlies as we get ready for Afcon comeback.
“The players we are following up on should be of big value should they finally make the final squad. They are players in Switzerland and England. If all goes well we should have them before the Ghana qualifier match, to see what they can offer,” said Muthomi.
Kenya play Ghana in the last 2019 Afcon qualifier match in March, the decider of who tops Group F in Accra.
The last time Stars played in Afcon was the year 2004 in Tunisia, under the tutalege of Kenyan Jacob ‘Ghost’ Mulee
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