Former Brighton striker hoping to help Kenya qualify for the World Cup

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STARS ABROAD Former Brighton striker hoping to help Kenya qualify for the World Cup

Mark Kinyanjui 08:08 - 18.07.2023

The striker was called up by Harambee Stars in August 2018 but is yet to make his debut for the side.

St Mirren striker Jonah Ayunga has revealed his ultimate plan to help Kenya qualify for the World Cup, revealing he is “ready to go” as soon as Engin Firat gives him the call.

Ayunga, who came through the Brighton and Hove Albion academy, is currently stepping up his rehabilitation from a nasty anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury he suffered in February against Motherwell.

The lanky forward received his first call-up to the Harambee Stars setup in August 2018 but never featured for the side. He has, however, openly stated he would wish to represent the country at the forthcoming 2026 FIFA World Cup.

“For every player, the World Cup is seen as the best place you can ever get to in terms of football,” Ayunga told the Daily Record.

“You never know. You have to dream big. Hopefully we can get there too one day.

“I’m hoping to get back involved with Kenya. I’m still just waiting to hear from them. Whenever they give me the call I’ll be ready to go.”

Kenya will take part in the 2026 World Cup qualifiers, having been placed in Group F of the qualifiers against tricky opponents like the Ivory Coast and the Gambia. The winner from that group will get to take part in the tournament.

Ayunga hopes his “good age” will put him in with a chance of being part of Engin Firat’s team that will try and make that dream a reality.

“I think they’re upping the number of teams in the World Cup next time around as well, which definitely gives you hope you can get there one day. I’m still at a good age and hopefully, I’ll be in with the team soon. They didn’t play any games in the last window, but hopefully, there will be something arranged soon.”

The 26-year-old has also featured for Morecambe and Bristol Rovers