NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 29 – Harambee Stars and their women counterpart Harambee Starlets may be forced to withdraw from the upcoming international assignments due to financial constraints, according to Football Kenya Federation (FKF) chief, Nick Mwendwa.
Coming up first is the national women’s team, Starlets, who are scheduled to play in a two-legged 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games qualifier against the She-Polpolo of Zambia with the first leg slated for November 8 in Kenya.
However, Mwendwa, who on Tuesday disbanded the Starlets’ camp, said the country will honor the fixture if they only get funds from the government since the return leg will be awaiting the girls a week after the opening round.
“FKF has diligently communicated to the Sports Ministry and the Sports Fund to come in and fund the national teams. We have, however, not received any response from the Ministry, which is frustrating,” Mwendwa lamented.
“We are calling out on the Ministry to come out with reasons why we cannot get funding from the Sports Fund despite having made numerous requests for the same,” he added.
Starlets are two steps away from qualifying for the Olympics for the first time ever after they eliminated Ghana 1-0 on aggregate.
If Starlets manage to honor the Zambia fixture and they come out victorious on aggregate, the Kenyan team will face the winner between Ivory Coast and Cameroon for the sole ticket to represent Kenya and Africa in the global showpiece next year.
For Harambee Stars, the team is set to kick-off their 2022 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier with an away trip to Egypt with the match set for November 15, then welcome Togo four days later at the Moi International Sports Center Kasarani.
Stars, who are in Pool G alongside favourites Egypt, Togo and Comoros, will be seeking to make a back-to-back return to the continental showdown.