Harambee Stars set for international friendly as part of 2026 World Cup qualification preparations


FOOTBALL Harambee Stars set for international friendly as part of 2026 World Cup qualification preparations

Festus Chuma 08:11 - 22.08.2023

Engin Firat's team will be playing an international friendly in September as part of their preparations for the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.

The Kenya national football team, Harambee Stars will play South Sudan in an international friendly match next month.

The showdown is scheduled to take place in Nairobi on September 12 at a venue that is yet to be confirmed.

With their eyes fixed on the ultimate prize of World Cup qualification, Harambee Stars are leaving no stone unturned in their preparation. 

The friendly encounter against the Bright Stars comes as an opportunity for coach Engin Firat to fine-tune their strategies and test their mettle against an opponent with a fierce competitive spirit.

The confirmation of the friendly fixture was recently announced by the South Sudan Football Federation on their official social media platform, creating a buzz of anticipation among fans on both sides.

Kenya through the Football Kenya Federeration (FKF) are however yet to confirm the friendly.

South Sudan's head coach, Stefano Cusin, has already unveiled his squad for the match, which is composed of both local talents and international players.

Among the players selected for the Bright Stars squad are three Kenyan-based individuals who have showcased their prowess in the domestic leagues.

Rashid Toha, a solid defender from Kenya Police FC, joins forces with Rainbow FC's Paul Juwa, and the former Mathare United defender, John Kuol, who has been training with Tusker FC. 

Notable omissions are AFC Leopards attacking midfielder Saad Musa and former Tusker FC forward David Majak. 

South Sudan, prior to their clash with Harambee Stars, will lock horns with Mali in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier match on September 8th. 

Kenya finds itself in Group F of the 2026 World Cup qualifiers following the draw that took place in July in Abidjan, Côte D'Ivoire. 

The road to the World Cup promises to be a formidable one, with Kenya pitted against strong competitors like Cote D'Ivoire, Gambia, Gabon, Burundi, and Seychelles.

The upcoming friendly encounter between Harambee Stars and South Sudan's Bright Stars revives memories of their previous clash in March 2021, where Harambee Stars triumphed with a narrow 1-0 victory.

South Sudan squad:

Majak Mawith Dandenong Thunder ( Australia),  Ramadan John ( GK) – Malakia ( South Sudan),  Khamis Danie, Atlabara ( South Sudan ), Anyama Joseph Luka ( GK) – Arua Hill SC( Uganda),  Lazarus Peter – Future Stars Academy ( South Sudan),  Wani Ivan Adebo - Bull FC ( Uganda),  Peter Maker Manyang – Radnicki Srem ( Serbia),  Rashid Toha – Kenya Police ( Kenya), Samuel Taban – Kator FC ( South Sudan),  John Kuol – Kariobangi Sharks ( Kenya), Dhata Joseph – Express ( Uganda),  Manyumow Achol – FK Auda ( Latvia),  William Akio – Cavalry FC ( Canada),  Dwang Jackson – Bandari FC ( Kenya), Loki Emanuel Peter – Bright Stars ( Uganda),  Many Aguek – BalzanFC ( Malta),  Valentino Yuel – Alluminium ( Iran),  Ayom Majok – Brisbane Roar FC ( Australia),  Chol Peter – Al Naser FC ( Sudan),  Joseph Malesh – Al Mereikh ( Sudan),  Nevello Yoseke – Monterey Bay FC ( USA),  Atendeke Gerica – Arua Hill ( Uganda),  Ajak Riak – Bentleigh ( Australia), Omot Sebit – Al Merreikh Juba ( South Sudan), Ochaya Okot Oywak – Simba FC ( South Sudan), Mario Taban – Future Stars Academy ( South Sudan), Paul America – Rainbow Fc ( Kenya), Rwothomio Innocent – Bul (Uganda), Ngong Madur – KCCA ( Uganda), Wani Shadrack Elisana – Malakia FC ( South Sudan), Innocent Ronald – Lucera Calcio ( Italy), Ismael Remo Sampuli Mansuk – Ray of Grace ( Uganda),  Philip Awad – Future Stars Academy ( South Sudan)