Nairobi News


AFC Leopards striker Makwatta relishes chance to don national colours again

AFC Leopards hitman John Mark Makwatta admits he is ‘excited’ to be back in the national team fold.

The 24-year-old has been included in Harambee Stars squad by coach Francis Kimanzi ahead of next week’s 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualification matches.


Kenya will visit seven-time African champions Egypt in Cairo on November 14, and the play host to Togo in Nairobi four days later as the race to the campaign to the biennial continental championship in Cameroon begins in earnest.

“It is good to be back. I’m excited but this is not enough. I’m hoping to convince the coach to hand me a chance,” Makwatta told Nairobi News.

“Our target is to qualify (for the next Africa Cup of Nations) and play better over there. We have to win our matches to stand a chance. Egypt are a seasoned opponent. But nothing is impossible,” he added.


Makwatta, who enjoyed a stint in the Zambian and Kuwaiti leagues after top scoring in the Kenyan league in 2016, has been called up after impressing in the Kenyan Premier League, where he has scored five goals in seven matches.

He will compete against foreign-based stars Michael Olunga, Jesse Were, and John Avire for a starting spot in attack.

At the same time coach Kimanzi is equally optimistic of a good show.

“At this level every team we face is a good side, so we have to be equally well prepared and I am confident that we will start off on the right football,” Kimanzi told Football Kenya Federation’s website.