Tuesday Apr 30, 2019. 10:14
Kenya’s national team will reportedly turn down the chance to play Nigeria in a friendly as part of preparations for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
The Harambee Stars will return to the AFCON for the first time in 15 years and are set to camp in Paris, France for three weeks prior to the start of the finals in Egypt, where they will come up against Algeria, Senegal and fellow East Africans Tanzania in Group C.
Football Kenya Federation president Nick Mwendwa has repeatedly claimed that they are working around the clock to secure a high profile build-up games for the team, and there have been reports that fixtures against Nigeria and Tunisia have been sought.
However, coach Sebastien Migne is apparently not keen on the idea. Nairobi news quote a source who claims that losing a game to powerful opposition just before the finals is something the Harambee Stars want to avoid.
“Playing away in Abuja or Tunis with the probability of a heavy defeat just before the tournament starts may not help the team’s confidence,” said the source.
“Then the proposed dates for these matches are too close to the tournament and there is that possibility of getting injuries. You also have to factor in the weather.”
Kenya could face Madagascar, Uganda or Ivory Coast in France, with Migne expected to name his 30-man training squad in the coming days.