Sofapaka’s Sh20 million budget ahead of new league season

Sunday November 23 2008

By NATION Correspondent

Sofapaka FC have a Sh20 million budget for the new Premier League season.

The club president, Elly Kalekwa, said all players would be given contracts with monthly salaries ranging from Sh20,000 to Sh70,000 per month.

Currently, the highest paid player in the Premier Leagues earns Sh20,000. Tusker FC, Mathare United and Sony Sugar are among the best paying clubs.

The president also said the club was currently looking for a sponsor and had acquired international players from all over the world. Some have already signed their contracts.

“Before we secure sponsorship, we are prepared to sustain the club for a long period from the money donated from our long time fans,” said Kalekwa.

“We have strategies to have our representative all over the world and we have a unique and fantasitic communication link with our network of supporters who will have a say on how the club is run.”

Kalekwa said his club had a three coaches system, but would retain Robert Matano as the head coach.

The club earned its promotion to the Premier League after winning the Nationwide League Zone ‘B’.

They have now set their eye on several players in the national team, Harambee Stars, but plan to retain most of the current players, according to Kalekwa.

During the club’s victory party held at Nairiobi’s City Hall to celebrate the team’s promotion to the Premier League, various players were rewarded.

Sofapaka are previous KFF Cup winners and missed promotion last season when they finished second to Mombasa’s Bandari.

They won the Nationwide Zone ‘B’ with 73 points after winning 22 matches, drawing seven and losing just one match.

During the party, over 20 Sofapaka players and officials were entertained by local and foreign artistes including Tonny Nyadundo, Mike Rua, La General Defao and church gospel groups, Nova Musica and Zion Musica.

The club received its championship trophy from the KFF second vice-chairman, Jacob Odudo Kabanze, who was accompanied by Nairobi branch chairman, Dennis Shilibwa Tusu, during the party.

Also in attendance were assistant Sports Minister, Kabando wa Kabando and Sports Commissioner Gordon Oluoch.

Immediately after receiving the trophy, the players mobbed their coach, Robert Matano.They danced, drunk and mingled with fans as the part went on till morning.

Kalekwa appealed to more fans to join the church side, formed in 2004.

Oduor challenged Sofapaka management to form a women’s soccer team as well.

Others who attended the occasion included politicians Simon Mbugua (Kamukunji), Dr Julius Kipyegon Kones (Koinoin) and veteran musicians, Kasongo wa Kanema and Bikassy Bijos.

Award winners were Otiato Maloba (top scorer), James Situma (most disciplined player), Demond Serenga (cleansed player), Michael Luheni (most improved player), Osama Frank (best defender) and coach, Robert Matano.