2022 World Cup Qualifiers: Kaizer Chiefs’ Akumu, Sagan Tosu’s Dunga return as Firat names Harambee Stars squad

Harambee Stars coach Engin Firat has named a 27-man squad for the upcoming 2022 Fifa World Cup Qualifiers against Uganda and Rwanda.

Kenya will face Uganda away – after drawing 0-0 at Nairobi Nyayo National Stadium – and then will host Amavubi in the other Group E qualifier.

Maiden call-ups

Gor Mahia’s Gad Mathews, Alwyn Tera of FC Ararat in Armenia, Nairobi City Stars’ Timothy Ouma and Wilkins Ochieng, who is based in Belgium, are the stars who have been given debut call-ups by Firat, who has a two-month contract with the Football Kenya Federation.

Kaizer Chiefs’ Anthony Akumu, KCB’s Michael Mutinda and Philemon Otieno of Gor Mahia have also made returns to the national set-up.

Eric Johana has also been considered once again as Ayub Timbe, Jesse Were and Johanna Omollo continue to be overlooked.

There is also the return of Ismael Dunga, who plays in Japan’s J1 League with Sagan Tosu. 

Jerim Onyango, Michael Olunga and Engin Firat of Kenya and Harambee Stars.

The Harambee Stars are expected to start the pre-qualifiers preparations on November 6 in Nairobi before facing the Cranes on November 11 at St Mary’s Stadium Kitende. The Rwanda game has been scheduled for November 15.

After two consecutive losses against Mali – a 5-0 humiliation in the first match and a 1-0 home defeat, Kenya’s dream of appearing in the 2022 World Cup finals was shattered and are now facing the neighbours in November just to fulfil the group’s remaining fixtures.

Kenya’s Full Squad

Goalkeepers: Ian Otieno (Zesco, Zambia), Brian Bwire (Tusker), James Saruni (Ulinzi Stars), Gad Mathews (Gor Mahia)

Defenders: Stanley Okumu (KAA Gent, Belgium), Abud Omar (AEL Larissa, Greece), Eric Ouma (AIK, Sweden), Bolton Omwenga (Kagera Sugar, Tanzania), Eugene Asike (Tusker), Johnstone Omurwa (Wazito), Philemon Otieno (Gor Mahia)

Midfielders: Amos Nondi (Dilagori, Georgia), Richard Odada (Redstar Belgrade, Serbia), Anthony Wambani (Vasalunds, Sweden), Kenneth Muguna (Azam, Tanzania), Alwyn Tera (FC Ararat, Armenia), Anthony Akumu (Kaizer Chiefs, South Africa), Wilkins Ochieng (Club Brugge), Michael Mutinda (KCB), Duke Abuya (Kenya Police), Timothy Ouma (Nairobi City Stars), Eric Johanna Omondi (Jonkopings, Sweden), Boniface Muchiri (Tusker), Abdallah Hassan (Bandari)

Forwards: Michael Olunga (Al Duhail, Qatar), Masud Juma (Difaa Hassani El Jadidi, Morocco), Ismael Dunga (Sagan Tosu, Japan)

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