The event will now be known as the GOTV Shield Cup with the first match set to be played on July 27 that will pit Finlays taking on Nairobi Stima.
This is after the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) and GOTV launched a partnership that will see the Pay TV channel which runs under SuperSport sponsor the tournament for a period of five years.
The tournament has gone through years of change with the most nostalgic years being the 80’s when the tournament was known as the Moi Golden Cup.
It underwent more and more metamorphosis until 2008 when it was rebranded to the FKL Cup, later on to change to the FKF Cup.
Throughout its years, the tournament has never had sponsorship with the winners mostly being awarded by the President, under whom the tournament was named. However, this year, GO TV will be the title sponsors of the tournament, bringing in title money and live screening as part of its package.
“This is a great partnership between two of the biggest passions; football and television. We thank Go TV and Supersport for coming in as sponsors for this great tournament. We want to assure them that we will give them the best support they need. Football in the country is growing and we are launching even bigger things soon,” FKF President Sam Nyamweya said during the launch.
The winner of the tournament this year will pocket Sh2m with the losing finalist getting Sh750,000, half a million for the third placed team while the losing play-off team will earn Sh250,000.
SuperSport East Africa General Manager Auka Gacheo lauded the new partnership adding that his company was committed to bettering the Kenyan game.
“We launched a partnership of televising the Division one league, following this up on the KPL partnership. This is another huge step and we are happy to launch this partnership with FKF. We are looking forward to more opportunities to partner and improve football in Kenya,’ Gacheo added during the launch.
The ceremony was also attended by Sports Cabinet Secretary Hassan Wario who lauded SuperSport and FKF on the partnership, urging FKF to make good use of the opportunity.
“This is a great initiative and as the government we are appealing to FKF as well as all other sports federations to make use of the sponsorship well as well as money from the government. I also want to appeal to the federation to go deeper into the grassroots to tap for talent there because there is so much talent,” noted the cabinet secretary.
This year’s tournament will see former Harambee Stars players under the Umbrella of Wazee wa Kazi registering for the tournament and they will begin their campaign against Internacional. However, a highlight is expected in South Nyanza with a local derby being set after the pooling; former greats Shabana taking on Borabu Chiefs.
After the first round knockout fixtures, winners of the 16 matches will qualify for the second round where they will meet up with all the 16 KPL Clubs which have been given a bye for the first round.
Another draw will be conducted where the Top four teams from Last year’s tournament will be seeded.
The Seeded teams are Cup holders Gor Mahia FC, losing finalists Sofapaka, Semi Finalists Tusker FC and AFC Leopards.