Coach Migne’s walk to fame begins against Black Stars

By Gilbert Wandera: Thursday, September 6th 2018 at 00:00 GMT +3 | Football
Head Coach Sebastian Migne of Harambee Stars training at Kenya School of Monetary Studies ahead of the upcoming Africa Cup of Nations Qualifier against Ghana on Saturday at Moi Sports Centre Kasarani. Sept 5, 2018. [Jonah Onyango, Standard]

Desperate to bag maximum points in his first competitive match at home, Harambee Stars coach Sebastian Migne has urged fans to come and cheer the team as they take on Ghana in Saturday’s Africa Cup of Nations qualifier at Kasarani.

It will be Migne’s first competitive home fixture since he was unveiled in May and the Frenchman is well aware of the huge expectations that await him.

Speaking yesterday at Kenya School of Monetary Studies (KSMS) where the national team has been training, Migne, while admitting that it is a tough fixture for his side, said fans will make a big difference.

“I expect the fans to come in big numbers push the team to victory. It is not a walk in the park for us but we have something extra, home ground advantage, and we want it to count,” he said.

He described their opponents as one of the best in the continent against whom they will try and get a good result.

“Ghana is a big team when it comes to continental football and have some good players in their ranks. They recently beat Japan and drew 2-2 with Iceland. They also beat Ethiopia 5-0 in their opening match in the Afcon qualifiers and this gives them a huge advantage going into Saturday’s match," said Migne.

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“After Ghana, we can plan on beating Ethiopia home and away and hope to dispatch Sierra Leone to be in a good position of fighting for a place in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations finals.”

Migne also confirmed that team captain Victor Wanyama is not available for the match and said he will soon get a replacement.

“Wanyama is a big player and we are facing a crucial match. Obviously his absence is a blow to us but we cannot focus on that and have to look for an able replacement.”

The Tottenham Hotspur midfielder is injured and has not played since the season started on August 10.

In the absence of Wanyama, Zambia-based defender David ‘Calabar’ Owino will wear the arm-band. The Zesco defender has also urged fans to come out and support them, saying they will not let them down.

“It is a big match and the expectations are huge. But we urge our fans to rally behind us and we promise not to let them down,” he said.

Japan-based striker Michael Olunga said the team is well prepared to pick maximum points.

“It is unfortunate that we lost the first match against Sierra Leone but that is behind us. We are geared to give our best and get a positive result at home. It is a vital match for us because the result will determine our fate in a big way.”