How Kenya National Football Team Can Improve; Harambee Stars

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Sports in Kenya usually comprise of athletics, volleyball, netball, boxing, tennis and football. Football in Kenya has been on the media limelight in Kenya mainly because of the performance of the Kenya national team, Harambee Stars in soccer. The shortcoming of Harambee Stars in Kenya has resulted in many Kenyans believing that Kenya cannot be able to compete in Africa and the rest of the world when it comes to football. This has been attributed by poor performance of Kenya in national matches especially in qualifications of the African cup of nation (CAF) and the world cup. Most attribute this failure to lack of support of Kenya football by the government of Kenya.

The other team that is facing the same problem is Kenya volleyball national team (women) which regardless of performing extremely well in Africa and the rest of the world, the government of Kenya still shows no support. They have won the cup in four consecutive years as the champions of Africa. Despite their best performance and recognition in Africa and the rest of the world, the government of Kenya has not made any attempt to support the national team. This can really contribute to the loss of Kenya talented players who may see that the government of Kenya does not recognize and appreciate their importance to the nation.

If we would analyze Kenya national football team (Harambee Stars), there are many factors that have contributed to decline in its performance in Kenya. Currently, it is positioned at position 128 in the football world ranking. We have seen how the government of Kenya has failed to support our national team through the ministry of sports and youth affairs in Kenya. Without financial support, there is no organization in Kenya that can carry on with their operations. It has been the lack of full funding from the government of Kenya that has contributed to failure to thrive for Kenya national team.

The condition of denial of allowances and delays in their salaries has demoralized Kenya players until they cannot dedicate their talents for the benefit of our country anymore. In most occasions, we have heard the likes of Mariga and Oliech in Kenya complaining that they have not been paid their allowances, and at times they are forced to use their money to pay their tickets whenever we have football international matches. The government of Kenya sometimes award athletes in occasions they win medals. The Football Kenya Limited (FKL) has failed to cooperate with the Kenya national team coach in incorporating young talented youths who can make an impact in the Kenyan team. We have 47 counties in Kenya, and if we can make an attempt of visiting each of them, we cannot miss young Kenyans talented in football who can carry Kenya to the next level in sports.

The Harambee Stars have lacked exposure to other parts of the world in terms football because there have been few international friendly matches and there is one is usually against an African country. Our Kenyan team needs to face countries such as Spain, Brazil, Netherlands and many others that are performing extremely well in football so that we can emulate their styles and improve on our own. Issue of firing Kenyan coach each time our team performs poorly is not a good idea. A coach should be given time to build on the team on a long term bases so that he can learn on the strength and weakness of each player in the Kenya team so as to build on them.

It is about time the government of Kenya valued the national team; Harambee Stars because they represent us beyond Kenya. The ministry of sports in Kenya should begin to support the team by fully financing it and improving on the stadiums in Kenya so that our players can feel appreciated since this boost their morale hence improving our team.

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