Three reasons why Harambe Stars could beat Zimbabwe in Malawi

FOOTBALL Three reasons why Harambe Stars could beat Zimbabwe in Malawi

Mark Kinyanjui 07:00 - 26.03.2024

Here are three big reasons Harambee Stars could beat Zimbabwe ahead of their clash on Tuesday.

Harambee Stars will be playing Zimbabwe at the Malawi Four Nations tournament on Tuesday, Mar 26, 2024 from 6 pm, making it the first time they will be facing them since 2008.

The Kenyans will be full of confidence after beating the hosts 4-0 in their first match of 2024, with everyone executing their role excellently.

They are using the tournament as preparation for their international fixtures in June, where they will be playing African champions Ivory Coast and Burundi in their third and fourth 2026 World Cup qualifiers.

Ahead of the game, we identified three reasons Harambee Stars could emerge victorious against the Warriors.

Head to head record significantly favors Kenya

Ahead of Tuesday’s match, Harambee Stars have faced Zimbabwe ten times before, and it is fair to say they have always been on the stronger side of things.

They have won five times, drawn four times and lost once, with 2008 the last time both sides met during the 2010 World Cup qualifying campaign.

That was 16 years ago, and football has changed significantly since then, but if Kenya U20’s performance against the Young Warriors is anything to go by, it should give them a motivating factor to win the tournament.

However, it has to be noted that Zimbabwe have some genuinely quality options, such as Nantes’ Tino Kadewere and Marshall Munetsi of Reims, who happens to be Joseph Okumu’s teammate, speaking of which…

Joseph Okumu renews acquaintances with Reims teammate  Marshall Munetsi 

For the first time in a while, a Harambee Stars player will be up against his club teammate internationally.

Munetsi. Who has scored three goals and registered another four assists for Reims from midfield this season, will be up against Okumu, who has been one of the most prominent center backs in Ligue 1 season.

The former Orlando Pirates man has played predominantly as a midfielder, but can also play as a striker and attacking midfielder.

 Okumu will surely have given tips to Harambee Stars attackers, including center back partner Johnstone Omurwa on how to capitalise on Munetsi’s weaknesses and prevent him from being a threat.

Zimbabwe yet to win game from open play since ban was lifted

Like Kenya, FIFA imposed a ban on Zimbabwe owing to government interference in 2022, and it was lifted after 18 months.

Since then, they have taken part in four international matches, and won none of them. Infact, they have drawn all four goals, showing their willingness to be solid but reluctance to be front footed.

This could play well into Harambee Stars’ hands and they will be full of confidence after scoring nine goals from their last two international matches.

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