Ayub Timbe happy after getting second chance with Stars

By Gilbert Wandera: Thursday, June 20th 2019 at 01:00 GMT +3 | Football
Harambee Stars midfielder Ayub Timbe in a past training session. [Stafford Ondego/www.sportpicha.com]

The last time he played for Harambee Stars, Ayub Timbe was sent off against Sierra Leone in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier more than eight months ago.

Kenya lost the match 2-1 and Timbe suspended for two subsequent fixtures as well as handed a Sh.1million fine. When he got injured later, Timbe could not get himself back in the team.

It meant he stayed out of the subsequent qualifiers and did not play any more matches as Harambee Stars made it back to the Africa Cup of Nations finals after a 15-year wait.

When Sebastian Migne called him up for this camp initially, the French man did not seem to be impressed by Timbe and even warned that he would drop him if he did not play according to his philosophy.

But after the second friendly match against Democratic Republic of Congo, which ended 1-1, Migne’s doubts about Timbe were all erased after he gave a great performance providing an assist leading to Kenya’s first goal.

“Ayub Timbe has the potential to be a great player in this competition,” Migne said afterwards.

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Timbe himself believes the initial reaction from Migne was due to a small misunderstanding.

“There was a small confusion. At club level, I play number 10 with an offensive role. Against Madagascar, Migne wanted me to play a more defensive role and that is not my strong point.

“However, against Congo, I played in my normal role and was more comfortable. I was just being me and that is where the great performance came from,” he said.

Timbe says he is very excited about playing in the Africa Cup of Nations finals which kick off tomorrow in Egypt.

“This is a dream I have heard since I was young and not just me but the majority of the players in this team and we look forward to having a great tournament. We have had good preparations learning new things every day and now we are ready to apply it to the tournament.

“Our first match against Algeria will be tough but we are ready to fight as a team and to do our best. We know that after doing this, results will come,” he said.

Timbe believes the match against Tanzania will be the toughest given the rivalry between the two countries.

“Between the three teams, Tanzania will be the toughest, one because we are neighbours and secondly all of us are looking to play each other.”

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