Strategic plan for Kenya u18 side revealed ahead of much-anticipated CECAFA tournament

Photo credit || FKF

FOOTBALL Strategic plan for Kenya u18 side revealed ahead of much-anticipated CECAFA tournament

Mark Kinyanjui 19:00 - 23.11.2023

FKF boss Nick Mwendwa has revealed the strategic plan for the Kenya u18 side as they prepare to take part in the CECAFA tournament which will be hosted in Kisumu and Kakamega.

Football Kenya Federation president Nick Mwendwa has revealed the long-term aim for the Junior Stars squad that will be taking part in the CECAFA u18 tournament which will kick off this weekend.

The tournament will be hosted both in Kisumu and Kakamega for a two-week period from November 25- December 5, 2023

Speaking before the boys were allowed to travel by flight to Western Kenya on Thursday afternoon, Mwendwa said that the aim of the tournament was to identify players that could end up getting absorbed into the senior national team set up ahead of the 2024 African Nations Championships (CHAN) and AFCON and World Cup tournaments.

“We have worked very hard to bring in some players that were out there, especially a few of them that left this year and to go to our clubs and schools to make sure that we have the best teams,” he said.

“It has been difficult to win at these kind of age group tournaments but the aim is to identify them so that next year we can have some of them even taking part in the CHAN qualifiers or even take part in it if we will host it ourselves.

“We will continue doing this with the schools tournament and u15s next year. That is how we will move forward to ensure that we have enough players to play at the top level for Harambee Stars so that by the World Cup 26 and AFCON 2027, we have enough players to choose from.”

Mwendwa believes that the squad Salim Babu picked for the assignments was “fantastic” and believes they will do well over the two-week tournament.

“Perhaps the time was a little bit short but we have a fantastic team. I had a chance to talk to them yesterday and I want to encourage the fans to come and cheer the team in Kakamega and Kisumu where we hope that the boys will be there till the finals.

Mwendwa has further revealed why the tournament is taking place in Kakamega and Kisumu.

“Particularly we wanted to do it there because we wanted to have (a large fan) attendance,” Mwendwa said.

“We want to encourage our people to come and support the young boys. Some of them might make it to AFCON 27’ and that is what our aim is.

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“I want to encourage everybody, if you are in Kisumu and Kakamega, come and watch the games, even with the rest if possible. These boys are the future.