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FKF wades into Were trials saga

The Paul Were saga took a new twist after the local football governing body threatened to take action against anyone behind the player’s withdrawal from the AFC Leopards’ squad that travelled to Ethiopia.

The winger was part of the team picked for the return leg Confederations Cup match against Defence that was scheduled for Sunday but his club – Fisa Academy that loaned him to Leopards – is reported to have pulled him out at the last minute for trials with South African club Bidvest Wits.

The player previously played for Tusker and helped them win the Kenyan Premier League title in 2011.

Football Kenya Federation (FKF) is not taking the matter lightly and promised to get to the bottom of it, terming it as an act of sabotage.

Leopards are threatening to take legal action against the Kenyan international who was instrumental during Ingwe’s first leg 2-0 victory against the Ethiopians last weekend.

Rules breached

“This is sabotage. Were is our player and we have not stopped him from going for trials. We only wanted him to be part of the team in Ethiopia before leaving for South Africa,” said Leopards’ organising secretary Timothy Lilumbi.

He said Were’s contract stipulates that Leopards should release him for trials to any club if an offer is made after following the correct channels.

Lilumbi said the player flouted the contract by sneaking through the back door. 

However, a Fisa official who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that all the right channels were followed and the GOtv Shield winners were aware of Were’s plans.

FKF wants all the parties involved to provide details on the relationship between AFC Leopards, Fisa and Were.

“This is a serious breach. A player failing to honour an International assignment has far-reaching repercussions,” read a the statement by FKF chairman Sam Nyamweya.

Efforts to reach Were for comment were fruitless as his phone went unanswered, amid reports that he had already left for South Africa.