By Greg Mulemi
Musa Otieno was Kenya’s captain when the country last participated in the AFCON way back in 2004 in Raddes, Tunisia. Under head coach Jacob Ghost Mulee, Kenya began the campaign on a losing 3-1 to Mali,Titus Mulama scoring Kenya’s consolation.
They then went on to lose 3-0 to Senegal whom incidentally they are going to face again in Egypt, the last match however ended on a positive note with the Denis Oliech led stars thrashing Burkina Faso 3-0 to finish 3rd in the group.
They witnessed it, had a firsthand experience and now they will be cheering the boys as they take on other African giants in Egypt.
Fourfourtwomedia met with Captain Musa Otieno and Tom Juma who gave different reactions towards the draw.
Otieno who played for Harambee Stars for over 12 years believes that Stars should treat the tournament just like any other and getting a positive against Algeria will be key to them making it to the next round.
“We need to have confidence in ourselves, believe that we are the best,”
“Right now the boys have the best machinery at their disposal, they are getting full support from the federation and that alone makes things look better for them,” he says.
“When we last participated in the showpiece, we had some hiccups heading into the tournament but we tried our best and even got that maiden win against Burkina Faso,” he told Fourfourtwomedia.
“Self belief and determination is the only recipe to getting positive results,” he added.
His counterpart Tom Juma ‘Gazza’ who also played in the 2004 tournament says the boys need to avoid stage fright in order to get something good from the group.
‘Most of the time we are affected by stage fright, we prepare for matches well but fail to replicate that on the big stage,”
“Our boys need to fight that phobia by believing that they can do it, it doesn’t matter whom they are facing, be it a player from the EPL, La Liga or Serie A,” Juma added.