The national soccer team head coach Engin Firat believes that tomorrow’s friendly match against Qatar will help the side get in shape as the team gears up for the forthcoming 2026 World Cup qualifying matches.
‘’This is not a normal friendly match not only because they are the top team but it’s also that we showcase Kenyan football and let the world know that Kenyan football is bigger than most people know. This will also open door for players in the team’’, Firat remarked.
Kenya arrived in Qatar on Wednesday y morning before their clash against the hosts scheduled Thursday at Al Janoub Stadium kicking off 6.15 pm East African time.
Firat remained hopeful that despite the foreign based players arriving late, the team will be ready for the match.
‘’Most of the foreign based players came today. Johnson Omurwa and Ayub Masika did not train with us so we did not make any training with the full squad but we expect to have one training session in Qatar because the weather conditions is also not so conducive ’’Firat said.
Bradford City defender Clarke Oduor and Armenia’s Ararat Fc’s Amos Nondi said the friendly matches will be crucial to helping the team find rhythm ahead of the daunting 2026 World Cup qualifiers.
‘’Having moved to a new club and getting more minutes am raring to go and just waiting for the opportunity and show what I can do’’,Clarke said.
‘’We are hoping for the best we have had two good friendly matches against Iran. There’s gradual change and we expect to get good result I would urge for support from the Kenyans at large and we promise to do our best’’,Nondi hinted.
After the Qatar friendly match Kenya is set to face South Sudan on September 12th in another friendly match in Nairobi.
Kenya is set to face Ivory Coast, Gabon,Gambia,Burundi and Seychelles in group F with the first round matches set to kick off in November
Ian Otieno (Zesco, Zambia), Byrne Odhiambo (KCB), Patrick Matasi (Kenya Police FC)
Collins Sichenje (AIK, Sweden), Joseph Okumu (Stade Reims, France), Brian Mandela (Mamelodi Sundowns, South Africa), Johnstone Omurwa (Estrela, Portugal), Daniel Anyembe (Viborg, Denmark), Eric Ouma (AIK, Sweden), Amos Nondi (Ararat, Armenia), Abud Omar (Kenya Police).
Richard Odada (AaB, Denmark), Teddy Akumu (Sagan Tosu, Japan), Kenneth Muguna (Kenya Police), Timothy Ouma (IF Elfsborg, Sweden), Duke Abuya (Singida Fountain Gate, Tanzania), Ayub Masika (Nanjing City Football Club, China), Alfred Scriven (IL Hødd, Norway), Clarke Oduor (Bradford City AFC, England).
Moses Shummah (Kakamega Homeboyz), Elvis Rupia (Kenya Police), Michael Olunga (Al Duhail, Qatar), Masud Juma (Al Jabalain, Saudi Arabia)