NAIROBI, Kenya, May 26 – Capital FM showed a character of a champion after once again proving they are the best, this time clinching the Neymar Jr 5-Aside football tournament after silencing Nakuru’s NYSA 1-0 in the National Finals played at Nairobi’s Aga Khan Walk on Saturday, booking a trip to Brazil for the global showpiece scheduled for July.
The Best Mix of Music team will now represent Kenya in the prestigious world title that will bring together over 60 countries where Capital FM will be out to write history by overcoming all the odds to win the global crown and have a chance to play against PSG and Brazil captain Neyar Jr.
It was a day to remember for Capital FM, who conceded only two goals after picking five wins and only two draws to be crowned the champions and maintain the bragging rights.
Stand-in coach Lassie Atrash was loss of words, heaping praises to his charges that comprised of captain of the day Kristian Malumbe, Solomon Okeyo, Jeff Ooko, Vincent Otieno, Kaysha Shagava and Shuyaib Shabir.
“You guys are just the best. You have proved that today. Team work, commitment and discipline won for us today and we can only thank God for this victory. We are not resting yet because we want to win the world title in Brazil just like we did at Anfield in 2016,” Atrash, the Capital FM Production Assistant said after the grueling finale.
Team Manager Duncan Kikata was pleased with his boys’ display, outlining that the win has made the team set the standards of the 5-Aside football tournament in the country.
“Congratulations boys, you have made Capital FM and the County of Nairobi proud, now you are going to fly the Kenyan flag in Brazil, go there and show them that as much as it’s a football nation, Kenya also has got talent,” ecstatic Kikata told his players.
Cheered by the home crowd, Capital FM started the day with a playoff to determine the representative of Nairobi region and they indeed did not disappoint as they eliminated Hakati FC 2-0 thanks to goals from Vincent Otieno and goal poacher Okeyo.
The win sent Capital FM into the Nationals that was played in a round robin format featuring representatives from Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Eldoret, Nakuru and Machakos with the top four booking a slot in the semi-finals.
Opening the round robin for Capital FM was a clash against Kisumu’s Pro 16 whom they demolished 5-0 with Ooko grabbing a hat-trick while Malumbe and Otieno scored a goal apiece.
It was routine in the second match as they whipped Mombasa based side Wiyani FC 2-0 where Okeyo opened the scoring before Ooko slammed home the second.
The third match against Eldoret’s Radho FC was tight and it needed Capital FM to dig deep to secure a point and force the match end 2-2. Otieno had tapped home from a Malumbe loop to send the hosts ahead but the hard fighting opponent leveled.
They took the lead with four minutes remaining, but Okeyo restored parity for the Atrash led side.
Capital FM bounced back in their fourth match, thrashing Machakos’ Heroes FC 3-0 with Shabir ‘Mo Salah’ notching a brace to add on Okeyo’s wonder goal.
However, the last match of the robin was settled for a goalless draw against Nakuru’s NYSA FC, but it counted less since they had already sailed through to the last four.
In the semis, Capital FM was paired against Mombasa, whom they bundled out after winning 2-0 courtesy of goals from the twining striking of Okeyo and Otieno and storm the final where they met a stubborn Nakuru side.
In the decider, Okeyo was the hero after striking the winner and only goal to send Capital FM to Brazil, sparking celebrations in the Capital City.
The team will now turn attention to the StarTimes Media tournament to be played next weekend.