Mathare United midfielder explains how he missed out on joining Crystal Palace

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FOOTBALL Mathare United midfielder explains how he missed out on joining Crystal Palace

Festus Chuma 07:32 - 04.03.2024

The promising midfielder from Mathare United missed a crucial trial that could have changed his career trajectory in England.

Mathare United midfielder Christine Lubulu has shared a heart-wrenching story of how a golden opportunity to join English Premier League's Crystal Palace slipped through his fingers. 

Born in the Democratic Republic of Congo and having shown promise at the Ligi Ndogo Academy in Nairobi, Lubulu was on the cusp of international acclaim when fate intervened in a most unfortunate way.

In 2011, Lubulu, along with his teammates from the academy, were invited to England to participate in a KIM tournament, an event that would unknowingly open the door to a potential career in one of the world's most prestigious football leagues.

Spotted by an agent during the tournament, Lubulu was selected for trials at various clubs, starting with Crystal Palace, where he had the chance to be enrolled in their esteemed academy.

"Chris Amimo (Ligi Ndogo chairman) organized our trials with Crystal Palace. We were two Kenyans new to the UK, scheduled to attend trials on a Saturday. Left on our own, we struggled to find the location and failed to connect with the right place," Lubulu recounted on Tiki Taka Show.

 "The trials were set to start at 11 am, but we arrived hours late and found that they had already begun. The officials informed us we could not take the field because we were late. Feeling devastated, we realized we had missed a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," he added, capturing the despair of the moment.

Despite this setback, Lubulu's career did not stall as he went on to play for notable Kenyan clubs like Kibera Black Stars and Sofapaka before finding a home at Mathare United.

Lubulu has since become one of the shining stars at Mathare United contributing significantly to their campaign to reclaim promotion to the FKF Premier League.

Currently, the Slum Boys stand second in the National Super League, amassing 43 points from 20 matches played this season. 

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