What you need to know:
- Apart from Bandari , FKF can also pick Homeboyz FC who finished second behind Gor Mahia on the Kenyan Premier League standings.
- Let us not punish players because of ideological differences. When players perform well, it the pride of the entire nation.
Football Kenya Federation (FKF) should stop playing games and nominate Bandari Football Club as Kenya’s representatives at the Caf Confederation Cup tournament whose preliminary rounds begin next month.
In Kenya, the slot is earned via the FKF Shield Cup competition which is determined through a knockout format. It is unfortunate that the last knockout tournament was not concluded owing to the coronavirus pandemic.
Competition ended prematurely with 16 teams, among them defending champions Bandari, still in the running. Bandari’s round of 16 fixture against Sofapaka aborted at the 11th hour when Batoto Ba Mungu were already in Mombasa.
This is after Bandari was instructed by their Kenya Ports Authority management, the team’s official sponsors, to follow the Ministry of Health guidelines to avoid the spread of the virus. This barred them from playing at Mbaraki Sports Club, their home ground, in line with social gathering rules.
Caf gave guideline to FKF on how to select representatives in the continental championships. In a circular dates August 31, 2020 and which was sent to all federations, Caf said for federations that did not complete the season 2019/2020 and considered the season as totally cancelled and not counted, the engaged teams in the season 2019/2020 should be allowed to participate.
Bandari, who represented Kenya at Iast year’s championship after winning the FKF Shield should, therefore, be the rightful representative’s as per Caf’s circular.
FKF president Nick Mwendwa’s recent statement that Kenya will forfeit the chance is ill-advised and should eb condemned. If left unchallenged, my fear is Kenyan players will be denied an opportunity to market themselves.
It will be foolhardy for FKF to deny Bandari their right to represent the country in this competition on flimsy grounds.
Football politics should not be allowed to interfer with players’ rights.
Apart from Bandari , FKF can also pick Homeboyz FC who finished second behind Gor Mahia on the Kenyan Premier League standings.
Let us not punish players because of ideological differences. When players perform well, it the pride of the entire nation.