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Nandwa open to Leopards’ offer

JAMES-NANDWANAIROBI, Kenya, April 3- Harambee Stars assistant coach, James Nandwa, is open about an approach for the vacant AFC Leopards post provided any deal gives him leeway to continue working with the national side.

Speaking to Capital Sport on Wednesday, Nandwa confirmed talks between him and Ingwe to replace the Tom Olaba who was axed on Monday at the Den are yet to take off.

“I’m interested in discussing the possibility of helping the club in any capacity but for now, we have not spoken with the chairman since he is away,” the former Karuturi Sport and Tusker FC coach said.

“The most important thing is I want to continue working for the national team and I would consider any offer that would enable that,” he added.

Leopard’s chairman, Alex Ole Magelo, who is also the Speaker of Nairobi County Assembly, is currently at an orientation retreat for Governors in Naivasha and Nandwa is hoping talks on the Ingwe head coaching role will commence once the club boss is through with the induction process.

Other front runners in the race to succeed Olaba who has won only one of the five league games Ingwe have played this term include Dutchman Jan Koops who led the side to within a whisker of the crown last season.

Nandwa’s stock has risen since he was placed in charge of the national Under-23 team and also the Kenyan squad for last year’s CECAFA Senior Challenge Cup that sailed to the finals of the competition against all odds before losing 2-1 to host Uganda in the decider.

He was placed in temporally charge of the senior side in January as Kenya failed to qualify for the final leg of the Africa Home Nations Championships (CHAN) with a 1-0 aggregate loss to Burundi.

Nandwa earned further plaudits when he led Stars to a 3-0 victory over Libya in an international friendly in neutral Tunisia.

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Football Kenya Federation (FKF) confirmed him as an assistant coach before Algerian born Belgian national, Adel Amrouche, was hired as Stars boss in February.

With Nandwa in the bench, Kenya held Nigeria to a 1-1 draw in Calabar a fortnight ago in their 2014 World Cup qualifier to re-ignite hopes of a maiden appearance at the Mundial.

“We are in the process of speaking to the FKF chairman so that we can start our preparations for the return leg against Nigeria in June early.

“The competition will be stiff since Nigeria have the resources to spend on their team so we need to start as early as possible. We will also ask the chair to facilitate scouting tours and high quality friendlies,” Nandwa observed.

Leopards were scheduled to play promoted Kakamega Homeboyz in a TPL fixture later Wednesday as they hope to bounce back from their 2-1 weekend loss at Muhoroni Sugar.

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