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Kakamega Homeboyz proud of Shummah’s memorable Harambee Stars’ debut

Thursday, June 15th, 2023 20:47 | By
Kakamega Homeboyz and Harambee Stars forward Moses Shummah. PHOTO/Kakamega Homeboyz/Facebook.
Kakamega Homeboyz and Harambee Stars forward Moses Shummah. PHOTO/Kakamega Homeboyz/Facebook.

Football Kenya Federation Premier League side Kakamega Homeeboyz have termed Moses Shummah’s debut for Harambee Stars as ‘perfect’.

The forward scored the only goal during Kenya’s Four-Nations opening match in Mauritius on Wednesday, June 14, 2023.

Shummah is the only player in the national squad from the Kakamega-based club, and on his debut, he scored a memorable goal.

Homeboyz proud

"A perfect debut for the national team, the Harambee Stars. We are proud of you, Shummah," the club noted.

The academy product has been a key and regular player for the 2023 FKF Cup finalists. Homeboyz will face Tusker in the final showdown of the domestic competition.

Meanwhile, the forward was Kenya’s main attacking man, as Michael Olunga, who has always been deployed as the main striker, strategically kept falling deep into the midfield.

Shummah did not disappoint, as he remained a dangerous player against Pakistan until he was withdrawn and Daniel Anyembe was thrown into action.

Firat's strategy

Head coach Engin Firat handed debuts to Shummah and Bryne Odhiambo. The KCB goalkeeper kept a clean sheet on his maiden appearance for Harambee Stars.

He surprisingly started ahead of Ian Otieno and Brian Bwire, more experienced shot-stoppers with the team in Mauritius.

Many expected Otieno to start since Patrick Matasi – who was in goal on Tuesday, March 28, 2023, when Kenya lost 2-1 to Iran in Tehran - was not called up.

With the clean sheet, Firat might hand Odhiambo and, to a greater extent, Shummah, their second appearances when Kenya take on Mauritius on Sunday, June 18, 2023.

Harambee Stars players in a training session. PHOTO/Harambee Stars(@Harambee__Stars)/Twitter
Harambee Stars players in a training session. PHOTO/Harambee Stars(@Harambee__Stars)/Twitter

David ‘Cheche’ Ochieng and Collins Sichenje, who displayed a solid partnership and recorded a clean sheet as they played together for the first time, are expected to keep their places at the heart of the defence.

Firat could also stick with his plan, which saw natural fullbacks deployed as wingbacks. Eric ‘Marcelo’ Ouma and Amos Nondi could play advanced roles just as they did against Pakistan.

Despite the fact that Abdalla Hassan and Clifton Miheso, natural wingers, were available, Firat chose to employ a more defensive formation against Pakistan, who are ranked 195th in the latest FIFA rankings.

Daniel Sakari and Aboud Omar may well keep their positions as right-back and left-back, respectively.

Richard Odada, the man of the match on Wednesday, is expected to keep his place and will partner Teddy Akumu. The two displayed a solid midfield partnership that is very promising.

Olunga's position

Olunga and Shummah will be maintained as focal points in the attacking zone, but fans will be eager to see whether the Al Duhail SC star will operate from deep midfield as he did against Pakistan.

The slim win is seen as a morale-boosting outcome for the Harambee Stars, who played their second match since they came back into the fold after FIFA lifted its suspension.

The Four-Nations tournament – which also has Djibouti – is meant to prepare Harambee Stars for the upcoming Africa Cup of Nations and World Cup qualifiers.

Firat will also use the matches to gauge the physical and mental readiness of his players and make amendments to the playing unit before the crucial qualifiers that start in November this year.

The Turkish coach has always called for high-profile friendlies for Stars because he says he wants to build a solid and competitive side that can challenge top nations in Africa and the world.

Harambee Stars head coach Engin Firat and players in PHOTO/Harambee Stars/(@Harambee__Stars)/TWITTER.
Harambee Stars head coach Engin Firat and players in PHOTO/Harambee Stars/(@Harambee__Stars)/TWITTER.

The former Moldova tactician has been calling for patience from fans, whom he wants to look to the future and avoid pressuring the team for immediate results.

After the Four-Nations tournament, there are no matches lined up for Harambee Stars.

Players from local clubs are expected to be released to complete the Premier League season, while those plying their trade abroad will be allowed to join their teammates for pre-season.

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