Wanyama, Olunga to miss Stars’ friendly against Tanzania
Harambee Stars captain Victor Wanyama and lead striker Micheal Olunga will miss the team’s high profile friendly clash against Tanzania at the Safaricom Stadium on Sunday.
Stars coach Stanley Okumbi confirmed this development on Friday, moments after leading the team through a two hour training session at the Utalii grounds. Tanzania arrived in the country on Friday morning ahead of the match.
“He (Wanyama) has a knock and is yet to train with us but the medical team is assessing his condition. He requires some rest,” Okumbi said of the Southampton midfielder.
On the other hand, Olunga’s unavailability is due to club commitments in Sweden. The 21 year old’s club Djurgarden IF is slated to play BK Hacken in a league match on Sunday, the same day Kenya will be battling Tanzania.
These two players are however expected to feature in Kenya’s dead rubber 2017 Africa Cup of Nations match against the Republic of Congo in Nairobi on June 5.
However, Okumbi, who is seeking his first win as Stars’ head coach since taking over the team in March, has a host of both foreign and local based players to select from for the match against Tanzania.
They include Spanish based youngster Ismail Gonzalez, who is eyeing a first senior cap, Greece based winger Paul Were and Cape Town Santos attacking midfielder Ali Abondo.
Also available for selection is the Zesco United trio of striker Jesse Were, defender David ‘Calabar’ Owino and midfielder Anthony ‘Teddy’ Akumu.
“I am happy and excited to be here and looking forward to representing Kenya. The training here is abit different with a lot of running. In Spain we focus so much on tactics and technique,” Gonzalez who is attached to Spanish second division side Caecerano, said.
Gor Mahia custodian Boniface Oluoch and the Kenyan Premier League leading scorer, Muhoroni’s Wycliffe Ochomo are also available for selection.
Kenya’s other international friendly against Sudan is scheduled for Tuesday in Nairobi.
Meanwhile, Tanzania coach Charles Boniface Mkwasa has called up a star-studded squad for Sunday’s clash, including the reigning African based player of the year Mbwana Samatta who is based in Belgium, TP Mazembe’s Thomas Ulimwengu and Azam FC’s John Bocco.
Harambee Stars schedule:
Sunday: Kenya U20 v Sudan U20 (Kasarani – 2pm), Kenya v Tanzania (Kasarani – 4pm)