15 April 2019

Kenya: Wanyama Finally Speaks On Africa Cup of Nations Draw

Photo: Kanyiri Wahito/Nairobi News
Dennis Odhiambo, Victor Wanyama and Michael Olunga celebrating a Kenyan goal against Ethiopia in a 2019 Afcon qualifying match in Kasarani, Nairobi. Kenya won 3-0.

Harambee Stars captain Victor Wanyama says he feels better after scoring his first English Premier League goal this season, and has also backed Kenya to progress from a tough looking Group C at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.

The 27-year old midfielder also told Nation Sport he's anticipating the face-off with deadly Senegal forward Sadio Mane at the continental showpiece.

Wanyama and Mane - who has scored 17 goals in the Premier League this season - played together at Southampton during the start of their respective careers in England before the former moved to Tottenham and the later transferred to Liverpool.

A day after Kenya was drawn alongside Senegal, Algeria, and Tanzania at the continental championship set for Egypt come June, Wanyama delighted a huge constituency of Kenyan football fans by scoring a brilliant goal as Tottenham demolished Huddersfield 4-0 in an English Premier League match.

This goal brought smiles and pride among several fanatics locally, including those dozens who were offered a special fully paid treat by Barclays Bank to watch the English Premier League match at the Villa Rosa Kempinski.

"I'm just happy that I am back and feeling stronger every day. I am happy to be in the game and get that goal. We have tough matches coming up, and then with the national team over the summer. We ask the fans and stakeholders for all the support," said Wanyama, who has been limited to 14 appearances, out of 41, for his club this season owing to injuries and fitness issues.

"We are in a tough group but we can manage (to progress) if we plan well and I am confident because the whole team has really improved in the last couple of years. I spoke to Mane after the draw and informed him that he should expect a tough game."

"He has struggled in national team colours and the Nations Cup is going to be his best and perhaps last opportunity to do something for Harambee Stars," veteran sports journalist James Wokabi pointed out at the Barclays treat.

The fanatics at Kempinski comprised 10 winners of the just-concluded four-month Superfans United campaign which aimed to determine the top Premier League fans in Kenya, in a competition which will ensure the overall winner gets a trip to the United Kingdom.

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