Stars back in training

June 2, 2008 12:00 am

, WINDHOEK, June 2 – The national football team Harambee Stars resumed training in Namibia barely 24 hours after losing 2-1 to the hosts in a 2010 World Cup qualifying match.

The team went through its paces at the Independence stadium in Windhoek on Sunday afternoon ahead of next weekend’s clash against Guinea’s Syli Stars.

Coach Francis Kimanzi said he was working on sharpening the team’s formation and tactical application.

“I was happy with the way the formation took effect on Saturday and we are working on improving on it because we are getting somewhere,” he said.

Kimanzi added that they will have to go all out attack against the West Africans: “ In Namibia we played some of the match in our half but against Guinea we will have to attack more and that is what we are working on.”

Parma midfielder Macdonald Mariga is set to join the team next week and Kimanzi said his inclusion will provide a major boost to the team.

“Mariga loves going forward and is good at initiating attacks so he will give us an extra dimension. He is also very powerful thus providing drive from midfield,” he observed.

The tactician added that he will make a few changes to the side ahead of Saturday’s game: “Each game requires a different approach so there will be a few changes as we try and get players who shall fit the system we shall apply against Guinea.”

He however alluded suggestions that the team will be under extra pressure to beat Guinea following their loss to Namibia.

“Everybody loves winning and whatever the case we will be under pressure to win because our fans want us to win. Even if we would have won, we would still have been under pressure to win against Guinea so for us the pressure is the same,” he said.

The team will leave Namibia on Monday afternoon and is expected back in Nairobi early Tuesday.

Auxerre striker Dennis Oilech however left for Nairobi on Sunday afternoon. The striker who was stretchered off on Saturday is however expected to be fit for next weekend’s clash.

Stars play Guinea’s Syli Stars at Nyayo National stadium before facing Zimbabwe in a double header on June 14 in Nairobi and June 21 in Harare.

The top two teams from the group will progress to the next phase of the qualifying campaign.


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