NAIROBI, Kenya, May 9- Having looked at the latest FIFA World Rankings and realised Harambee Stars are rooted at position 122, Harambee Stars coach, Adel Amrouche has pledged to swing into action in a bid to move the nation up the global ladder.
Reacting to the latest ratings released Thursday, Amrouche has penned the crunch 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifier against Nigeria as the beginning of the ascent in a bid to give Kenyan players a better chance to land clubs overseas.
“My aim is to ensure that Kenya rises in the rankings as since I know it’s important for the players when seeking to join clubs in Europe and a good showing against Nigeria will be a positive start,” the coach told SuperSport.com.
“The many matches we have will play a big part for Stars to rise through the rankings as we hope for good results,” he added as he prepares to face Ghana Black Stars on June 1 before taking on the might of African champions, Super Eagles on June 5.
Facing the West Africa giants will be a stern test for the Belgian coach who underlined his credentials by masterminding a 1-1 draw away to Nigeria in Calabar on his first match in charge.
Then, Stars conceded a last gasp equaliser to spare the Super Eagles the ignominy of a monumental upset but Amrouche’s task is made harder by the absence of captain Dennis Oliech and first choice keeper, Arnold Origi from the Nigeria match through suspension.
Critics have hit out at the Belgian for his intention to invite the suspended duo to feature in the proposed Black Stars friendly that was cast in doubt when Football Kenya Federation (FKF) announced they were short of meeting the Sh4.5m budget they need for the fixture earlier this week.
Amrouche is scheduled to name the foreign based contingent that will augment his squad next week.
Stars are currently ranked 34 in Africa this is despite their stalemate against African champions Nigeria.
Kenya will play Malawi and Nambia in their remaining World Cup qualifiers with a planned friendly against Ghana’s Black Stars lined-up on June 1.
Neighbours Tanzania are 116th in the World and 33rd in Africa while Uganda are 91st in the World and 24th in Africa.
The last time Kenya was ranked among the top 100 was in 2008 when coach Francis Kimanzi was at the helm with the team being ranked 68th.
Globally, world champions Spain maintain their position at the head of world rankings with the top ten teams all unchanged.
Germany, Argentina, Croatia, Portugal, Colombia, England, Italy, Holland and Ecuador close the leading ten nations.
FIFA AFRICA RANKINGS (world position alongside)
Ivory Coast 1/12
Burkina Faso 8/50
South Africa 9/56
Equatorial Guinea 10/61
Central African Republic 12/64
Sierra Leone 14/67
Cape Verde Islands 19/75
Congo Brazzaville 21/78
Democratic Republic of Congo 23/86
Sao Tome e Principe 42/160
Comoros Islands 49/192
South Sudan 52/200
Next rankings: June 6