The national football team, Harambee Stars, are on the verge of qualifying for the biennial premier continental tournament, the Africa Cup of Nations to be staged in Cameroon next year.
Harambee Stars’ 0-0 result away to eternal neighbours and bitter rivals Ethiopia on Wednesday, combined with Fifa’s suspension of Sierra Leone means Kenya now needs three points to return to continental football fiesta for the first time since 2004.
Ethiopia come calling this Sunday, a fixture Harambee Stars must win if they are to avoid the huge task of having to beat Group F giants Ghana in Accra in March next year.
For this to happen, Harambee Stars need all the support that will push them over the line. The huge turnout of fans at Bahir Dar Stadium on Wednesday created an intimidating atmosphere. To have come out unscathed, our boys deserve commendation.
Sunday is our chance to make Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani, a cauldron of sport as the lads attempt a final heave-ho for the finals in Cameroon.
Kenyans, especially Nairobians, are known for not turning up in large numbers to support the national team – often preferring to turn up for political rallies. A lot actually, prefer to watch foreign football in drinking joints. They owe it to their country to show up at Kasarani.
Football Kenya Federation and the Ministry of Sports must pull all the stops to ensure the team enjoys tranquil conditions and focus ahead of the match. If there are any outstanding issues, like player and coach allowances and bonuses, it should be sorted out before the do-or-die clash.
Let us pull together- as the Harambee Stars moniker suggests-and enjoy the carnival once victory is assured. Harambee Stars count on all of us, their fans.