Musa Otieno reveals ‘peanuts’ Harambee Stars players got paid for 2004 Afcon feat
Former Harambee Stars captain Musa Otieno has revealed how the government and former football bosses paid him and his colleagues a paltry Sh3,000 to compete at the 2004 Africa Cup of Nations in Tunisia.
The retired central defender, who is the last footballer to captain Kenya at the continental tournament, spoke to Nairobi News on Thursday, on the sidelines of the launch of the BetLion betting company where he was the special guest.
“I only received $30 (about Sh3,000 at the current exchange rates) to play at the Nations Cup,” explained the 44-year-old.
“Obviously, that (amount) was not enough and one could tell the motivation wasn’t there in the team even though we managed to win one game at the tournament (out of three games played),” Otieno further narrated.
Kenya lost 3-1 Mali and 3-0 to Senegal, before recovering in the final group match with a resounding 3-0 victory over Burkina Faso during that tournament.
Otieno, who has recently served in the national team’s technical bench as well as a TV pundit, also sent out an appeal to the current Football Kenya Federation (FKF) office to involve ex-football stars in the game.
“Our current national has got the quality to do better than we managed to, but they need support and I’m referring to good preparations and better bonuses,” he said.
Otieno also challenged key stakeholders, especially corporate firms, to support the current national team which has qualified for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations for the first time in 15-years.
The former AFC Leopards, Tusker and Sanlam Santos (South Africa) defender is the last Kenyan footballer to captain Stars at the Africa Cup of Nations.
Stars have been promised Sh50 million by Deputy President William Ruto for qualifying for the Nations Cup but FKF president Nick Mwendwa recently said that the team needs Sh200 million to adequately prepare for the continental championship.