In the upcoming September FIFA international week, Harambee Stars is expected to play three friendly matches against Mozambique, Togo and Mauritania. The only positive part of it is that the Mwendwa-led FKF office has utilized almost every FIFA week by making sure it lines up international friendlies for the National team during the period which is unlike in the past.
However, when I take a look at the teams Kenya shall play against, I immediately turn biblical and a verse in the Holy Book (Galatians 3.3) pops up in my mind. It says,
‘Are you so foolish? Having begun with the spirit, are you now ending with the flesh?’
The words of the verse very well describes the current state of the FKF office as far as the national team is concerned. Nick Mwendwa and team began very well when they took office. A lot of effort was put towards helping the national team, Harambee Stars, by playing numerous friendlies and displaying top football against good teams like Congo DR and Zambia. This is what we can call beginning with Spirit. As a result, the team has risen in FIFA rankings. In previous regime, it was almost impossible for Kenya to go above position 120 but since Mwendwa took over, our national team has risen and currently stands at position 82.
I personally, on this platform, applauded the work of FKF and predicted a good future for the Kenyan football but now, folks, things are turning for the worst.
How will playing Mozambique help Kenya develop its game? Mozambique stands at position 104 which is 22 places below Kenya. Togo is ranked 31 places below Kenya at position 113. Mauritania is ranked 4 places below Kenya at position 86. Surely, what shall Kenya gain by playing such teams? Isn’t this a classical example of ‘ending with the flesh?’. The only high possibility we have is dropping in the next FIFA rankings. Remember Novermber 2016 Kenya played against lowly ranked Liberia and Mozambique and actually won both but the effect on FIFA rankings was dropping four places.
If our national team has to play friendlies, let it be against teams ranked higher than Kenya and thus have an opportunity to learn new things. Let FKF continue with spirit as it started with by doing what is helpful to Kenyan football. Anything short of that, the team shall go back to where they took it from.