By Dennis Mabuka
Former Gor Mahia midfielder George ‘Blackberry’ Odhiambo has signed for top Armenian side Shirak FC just months after agreeing to feature for Nairobi City Stars in the Kenya Premier League.
The 20 year-old, who also featured in Goal.com's 100 Young Stars to look out for in 2011, is said to have signed a three year contract after impressing during a two week trials with the league leaders.
Shirak FC manager Vardan Bichakhchyan said after landing Odhiambo's signature," I am totally satisfied with what George is offering us on the pitch. The interesting thing about this boy is that his best is yet to be seen. If nurtured carefully, he has the potential of becoming a world class player.”
A former student of Thur Gem High School, ‘Blackberry’ begun his career playing for Gor Mahia at the age of 16.
He became a star player for Gor Mahia and was awarded the "Most Promising Player" award in the 2009 Kenyan Premier League. In the 2010 season, he was awarded the Kenyan Premier League Player of the Year award.
He later signed for Danish Superliga club Randers FC in 2011 where he made his debut in a match against FC Nordsjælland. He came on the pitch, replacing Jonas Kamper and the match ended 2-1 to the opponent.
After a rather unsuccessful season in Denmark, Odhiambo signed with Azam in the Tanzanian Premier League at the start of the 2012 season. However, he fell out of favour within the squad and was released from his contract in July.
Odhiambo now joins Shirak, who have participated in three different European Cups – Champions League, Uefa Cup and Intertoto Cup.
Nairobi City Stars, who will receive an undisclosed percentage of the player's subsequent transfer fees, have confirmed and sanctioned the move.
“We wish the player (Odhiambo) well. We have talked to his new club and agreed in principle and we will release him to pursue his fortune elsewhere. We know he is in a better position to expose himself to even better opportunities than at our club," said club chairman Peter Jabuya.