What you need to know:
- Nation FC coach John Ashihundu said his side — that has benefited from technical insights from seasoned player Augustine Kuta — is ready for the match.
- “We are well prepared to take on Bandari FC… We have had good training sessions in the past few weeks, although we are just starting. This is a great match and we hope to walk out victorious after the 90 minutes,” Ashihundu said.
Mombasa-based Kenyan Premier League outfit Bandari FC are in Nairobi for pre-season training and will Thursday play non-leaguers Nation FC in a friendly match at St Mary’s School from 9am.
Bandari FC will then lock horns with fellow premiership side Kariobangi Sharks in another friendly build-up match on Saturday at the Utalii grounds.
Nation FC — a staff side from the Nation Media Group stable — are using the match to gel and regroup, hoping to have another go at the knock-out Betway Cup tournament in the new season.
Nation FC will miss the services of reliable midfielder Eric Musungu who is recovering from surgery to fix a knee injury and will also be trying out new players who are on trials.
Bandari are in Nairobi for a week for high-altitude training.
The portsmen are aiming to clinch their maiden title this season and are scheduled to kick off the Football Kenya Federation Premier League (FKF-PL) season against rivals Kenya Police FC away at the Nyayo National Stadium on September 10 with their second match at home in Mombasa to Wazito FC on September 22.
In bolstering their squad, the Dockers have so far secured six new faces in the “Dockyard” by luring the signatures of defender Omar Somobwana from AFC Leopards and midfielders Enock Makacha from Talanta, Fidel Origa (from Wazito), Mohamed Abeid (Coast Heroes) and the former Kariobangi Sharks duo of Douglas Mokaya and striker Felix Oluoch.
More names are expected to sign in the few weeks to come.
Bandari has also recalled Wilberforce Lugogo and Hamid Mohamed who were on loan at Sofapaka.
The Dockers finished fourth last season behind leaders Tusker FC, second-placed Kakamega Homeboys and third-placed Gor Mahia and they hope to clinch the first title this season.
“We are in Nairobi for a week, and we are planning to have high altitude training as the build-up for the first few fixtures,” Bandari's team manager Albert Ogari said.
Head Coach Anthony Kimani is hopeful of a positive start to the season and that his team is well prepared to start the season
“We have been training well, we are in Nairobi for a change of altitude in preparation for the coming away fixtures, but we are training well and we expect a positive start come September,” Kimani said Tuesday.
Benefitted from insights
Nation FC team manager Elias Makori thanked Bandari FC for agreeing to play the friendly and also the administrator and management of St Mary’s School for allowing the NMG team to use their grounds for daily training sessions and tomorrow’s game.
Nation FC coach John Ashihundu said his side — that has benefited from technical insights from seasoned player Augustine Kuta — is ready for the match.
“We are well prepared to take on Bandari FC… We have had good training sessions in the past few weeks, although we are just starting. This is a great match and we hope to walk out victorious after the 90 minutes,” Ashihundu said.