NAIROBI, Kenya, October 13 – For the second time in as many months, Coach Antoine Hey was missing when the national football team Harambee Stars returned home from an international assignment on Tuesday morning.The German tactician instead flew directly to Germany after Kenya’s 1-0 loss to Tunisia in a 2010 World Cup qualifier last Sunday.
Last month, Hey caused a stir when he failed to make the journey back to Nairobi with the team after a 1-0 loss to Mozambique in Maputo opting to fly back to Europe to be with his father as he celebrated his 60th birthday.
And on Tuesday morning, Team manager Edawrad Oduor was at pains to explain his absence.
“The coach told us he was going back to Germany because he has a two week training programme before our final match against Nigeria and he will be back long before then,” said Oduor.
He added that there would be only two additions to the team that did duty in Tunisia.
“We are keeping faith with most of the players who did duty in Tunisia but we will add Gor Mahia’s Ibrahim Kitawi and John Barasa of Sofapaka,” he added.
Oduor said that they had decided to call up the dup to bolster attack, “While we are happy with the defensive side of things, we feel we need to increase our options in attack because that was our weakness in Tunis.”
Professional players in the squad will be named two weeks to the match.
“We are hoping that Macdonald Mariga will have recovered but the coach will release the names as we near the match,” said Oduor.
The loss saw Kenya stay rooted to the bottom of Group B with three points while Tunisia continue to lead the group ahead of Nigeria while Mozambique are third with four points.
Stars must therefore beat Nigeria in Nairobi on November and hope that Tunisia hold Mozambique in Maputo for the them to qualify for the 2010 African Cup of Nations in Angola.
And with Nigeria looking for the three points to keep their own World Cup hopes alive, it will be a tall order for Stars.