President William Ruto has called upon Kenyans to gather at the Moi International Sports Centre – Kasarani to support the national men’s soccer team, Harambee Stars, in their upcoming match against South Sudan.
The match is the second and final international friendly of the FIFA September 2023 international break and will kick off at 4 pm.
Acknowledging the importance of fan support, often referred to as the “12th man,” President Ruto emphasized the significance of securing a home victory.
This game marks Harambee Stars’ return to action on Kenyan soil after nearly two years.
“As you are all aware, today at 4 pm, Harambee Stars will be playing against South Sudan. I want to ask all Kenyans to show up and cheer for our champions, the Harambee Stars,” urged President Ruto.
In their previous friendly on September 7, 2023, in Doha, Harambee Stars secured a remarkable victory against Qatar, the Asian champions and World Cup hosts.
Joseph Okumu’s bullet header and Amos Nondi’s late tap-in sealed a 2-1 win for Kenya, ranked 105th by FIFA, over Qatar, ranked 59th.
President Ruto commended Harambee Stars for their victory against the Qatar national team, expressing his happiness about the substantial Kenyan support in Qatar.
“Congratulations Harambee Stars for winning against the Qatar national team last week. I am happy very many Kenyans showed up in Qatar to cheer our team,” President Ruto said.
Reports indicated that 15,000 tickets were sold for the Doha clash, with 11,000 of them purchased by Kenyan fans.
Harambee Stars’ triumph marked their first win against a Middle East team since 1994.
Kenya using friendlies to prepare for World Cup qualifiers
Kenya is determined to secure its inaugural World Cup appearance at the 2026 edition hosted by the United States, Mexico, and Canada.
To bolster their preparations, Harambee Stars are utilizing these friendly matches in advance of the World Cup qualifiers, set to commence in November with away games against Gabon and Seychelles.
In the Africa World Cup qualifiers, Kenya finds itself in Group F, alongside strong contenders such as Ivory Coast, Gabon, Gambia, Burundi, and Seychelles.