Coach Engin Firat has commended the Football Kenya Federation’s efforts in setting up high profile friendly matches for the Kenya national team, Harambee Stars.
The coach, while overseeing the Harambee Stars’ second training session in Turkey ahead of their friendly match against Russia, noted that these friendly matches not only expose the players to high level football but also market Kenyan football to a global audience.
Firat specifically singled out the friendlies against Qatar and Iran, while commending the team for squeezing out a positive result in both matches.
“Against Iran we played well. Against Qatar, we got the result we wanted against the Asian champions. These friendlies are not just about results but opening up opportunities for Kenyan football,” said the coach.
“I am hopeful that these matches will not only expose our players to better opportunities but also market Kenyan football, and in the long run, generate income for our clubs through transfer fees,” added the coach.
The coach, in the meantime, rallied Kenyans to support the team as it embarks on a crucial journey ahead, this as he reiterated his trust in the players called up to the team.
“Everyone has their expectations on our squad selection. My job is to build a formidable team for the upcoming assignments. Nonetheless, the door is open for anyone to come in or out. I am confident that the squad I have is capable of the task ahead,” said coach Firat.
Kenya faces Russia in an international friendly match on Monday, October 16, 2023, in Antalya, Turkey. The match will be the final test ahead of the upcoming 2026 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers set to kick off in November this year.
The Harambee Stars have been pooled in Group F against Ivory Coast, Gabon, Gambia, Burundi, and Seychelles.