'It's unfair' - Ex-AFC Leopards defender frustrated by lack of playing time in Sweden

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'It's unfair' - Ex-AFC Leopards defender frustrated by lack of playing time in Sweden

Mark Kinyanjui 12:55 - 01.06.2024

The Harambee Stars defender has bemoaned his lack of playing time at 2018 Swedish champions AIK.

Former AFC Leopards defender Collins Sichenje is facing a challenging period at Swedish club AIK, with limited playing opportunities this season.

Despite overcoming a pre-season injury and being fit to play, Sichenje has not featured in any of AIK’s league games, fueling frustration and uncertainty about his future at the club.

Reports have emerged suggesting that AIK are favouring Ahmad Faqa, a young defender who recently returned from a loan spell. 

Faqa, who spent last summer on loan, has garnered interest from several clubs, potentially positioning him for a move in the upcoming transfer window. This development appears to have sidelined Sichenje, much to his dismay.

In an interview with Fotboll Sthlm, Sichenje aired his frustrations, stating, “If I don’t get the chance (to play), I have to leave. It is unfair that I am not allowed to play.” His sentiments reflect the growing tension and disappointment he feels due to his lack of involvement on the pitch.

Sichenje joined AIK from FKF Premier League side AFC Leopards ahead of the 2022 season. During his debut season, he made eight appearances in the Allsvenskan, starting in four of them. Last year, he was loaned out to Finnish club Kuopio Palloseura (KuPS), where he made 20 league appearances and earned the accolade of Young Player of the Season.

Before the current season began, there were rumours linking Sichenje with a move to AIK’s rivals, Mjallby.

However, these reports were quickly dismissed by the club’s sports manager, Hasse Larsson. Despite this, the defender’s future at AIK remains uncertain, with FotbollDirekt indicating that he might be loaned out again this summer. 

AIK are reportedly looking for a club in Norway to send Sichenje on loan, as they are not keen on losing him permanently. His contract with AIK runs until the summer of 2026.

The club's decision to focus on Faqa and explore a potential transfer for the 21-year-old defender has added to Sichenje's predicament. AIK's strategy appears to prioritise Faqa’s development and market value, potentially at the expense of Sichenje’s playing time and career progression.

As the summer transfer window approaches, Sichenje’s situation will be one to watch. The defender’s desire for regular playing time and AIK’s plans for him could lead to another loan move, possibly providing him with the much-needed opportunity to showcase his talent and secure a stable position in professional football.

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