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NSL newbies set ambitious targets
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|NSL newbies set ambitious targets by Kenyans247(1): Sat 14, November, 2020 09:02am|
What you need to know:
Mwatate of Taita Taveta County, and Silibwet of Bomet County were promoted to the 2020/21 NSL after topping the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Division One League Zone A and B on 33, and 32 points respectively last season
Mwatate United chairman James Okoyo revealed that the squad that won promotion to NSL is still intact and nothing should stop them from achieving their target having signed eight players
Silibwet coach Patrick Otuti believes the club stands a good chance of progressing to the premiership if the players’ welfare is well taken care of
Mwatate United and Silibwet FC officials are confident their new signings will help them mount a strong challenge in their National Super League (NSL) debut season.
Mwatate of Taita Taveta County, and Silibwet of Bomet County were promoted to the 2020/21 NSL after topping the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Division One League Zone A and B on 33, and 32 points respectively last season.
Soy United, who are based in Kakamega County, is the other team that earned promotion to the second tier league, after seeing off Nairobi’s Mully Children Family (MCF) in post-match penalties following a 1-1 draw during Division One League promotion play-off.
Mwatate United chairman James Okoyo revealed that the squad that won promotion to NSL is still intact and nothing should stop them from achieving their target having signed eight players.
The club has 27 players, with the eight new faces being defenders Geoffrey Onjuati (St Anthony's Boys Kitale), Josphat Oyugi (Modern Coast Rangers) and Nigol Mohammed (Nzoia Sugar). Others are midfielders Maxwell Onyango (Chemelil Sugar), Evans Mumu (Kangemi All Stars) and Stephen Mueni (Nairobi City Stars), goalkeeper Caleb Onyango (Gor Mahia Youth) and striker Cornelius Juma (Sofapaka).
Mwatate whose home ground is Dawson Mwanyumba Stadium in Taita Taveta County has also brought on board Andrew Kanuli as a caretaker coach, with talks at an advanced stage to appoint him as the club’s new tactician.
Kanuli, who has previously been in charge of Nzoia Sugar, Shabana FC and Bungoma Super Stars, tipped the team to perform well in their NSL debut season.
“Qualifying for NSL is not something easy. Since they (Mwatate) have done it, I don’t think they would want to see that chance slip away from them. We will give our best in every match and see how far we can go,” said Kanuli.
For Silibwet, coach Patrick Otuti believes the club stands a good chance of progressing to the premiership if the players’ welfare is well taken care of.
He was impressed with the barren draw against Kenya Premier League side Sofapaka in a friendly match at Silibwet grounds on Thursday since they had not trained for long.
“To me, I considered it (barren draw with Sofapaka) a big achievement. Prior to that match, we had trained for two weeks only and it is a sign of good things ahead. Qualifying for the (top tier) league will not be difficult if the players get everything that they need,” said Otuti who replaced Lenny Kigen.
Silibwet team manager Eric Rono tipped the eight new signings whom he declined to reveal, to steer the club to greater heights.
The Bomet based club has 30 players in its squad having released six.
Rono said they are in talks with different organisations, over possible sponsorship for the club as they currently depend on well-wishers and assistance from Bomet County government.
The two teams will face-off at Silibwet grounds on November 28 for their season opener according to the draft fixtures released by FKF.
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