alexa CS Amina full of praise for Matasi, Olunga in Cairo - Daily Nation

CS Amina full of praise for Matasi, Olunga in Cairo

Wednesday July 3 2019

Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohammed (centre) and Kenya's Ambassador to Egypt Joff Otieno (left) greet Harambee Stars players during a luncheon by the River Nile in Cairo, Egypt on July 2, 2019. The team had lunch during a cruise of the iconic river. PHOTO | COURTESY |

Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohammed (centre) and Kenya's Ambassador to Egypt Joff Otieno (left) greet Harambee Stars players during a luncheon by the River Nile in Cairo, Egypt on July 2, 2019. The team had lunch during a cruise of the iconic river. PHOTO | COURTESY |  

DAVID KWALIMWA
By DAVID KWALIMWA
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Sports CS Amina Mohammed has singled out Harambee Stars goalkeeper Patrick Matasi and forward Michael Olunga for praise and also hailed the current Harambee Stars squad as the "best ever" to represent the country.

She spoke on Tuesday during a luncheon prepared for the national football team in Cairo and also assured Kenyans the government remains more keen to develop talent.

"Every child is now singing Matasi, every striker wants to be like Olunga," said Mohammed.

"Collectively, you have shown yourselves as the best squad to ever represent the country. The government is putting in place the necessary institutional, regulatory and policy framework needed to promote talent discovery and training in the country."

Despite the CS's sentiments, Kenya, captained by Victor Wanyama appeared to struggle in the competition on both the attacking and defensive front.

The team won only one of their three assignments, a dramatic 3-2 triumph over Tanzania's Taifa Stars.

The other two games ended in 2-0 and 3-0 losses respectively to bigwigs Algeria and Senegal.

Ultimately, Stars finished third in Group 'C' which is outside the automatic qualification slots but still stand a chance of progressing to the knockout stage of this continental showpiece.

The qualification will - however - depend on results of matches including rivals Angola and Benin.

"We performed well even though we have an inexperienced side. I suggest we give this squad time and support," added ex-Harambee Stars midfielder MacDonald Mariga.

"So much investment and professionalism is needed for our team to be in a position to perform, from the infrastructure to the team selection and even training methods. We have to be serious and work bottom-up," explained media personality Carol Radull.

Mohammed has also urged Football Kenya Federation to begin early preparations ahead of next month's Africa Nation's Championship (Chan) qualifiers next month.

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