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Joseph Okumu: Harambee Stars defender reveals why he signed for IF Elfsborg

10:16 GMT+3 29/08/2019
Joseph Okumu of Harambee Stars and IF Elfsborg.
The former Chemelil Sugar star explains why he chose to sign for the Swedish side despite a host of European clubs fighting for his services

Harambee Stars defender Joseph Okumu has revealed the reason he opted to sign for Swedish Allsvenskan side IF Elfsborg.

The towering defender was unveiled on Wednesday just a day after Goal reported he was in Sweden to seal a transfer move from Real Monarchs in the USA.

“A number of teams in Europe had shown keen interest for my services but the moment I met with Elfsborg officials, I was convinced it was the best place for me to improve my career,” Okumu told the club’s official website.

“[Elfsborg] is a big team in Sweden and they have a good history and also the league in Sweden always produces great players.

“It was a deal which no other player could have turned down and I really feel good to have signed the same. I already like the place and I want to keep working hard, keep learning more because I want to develop as a player.

“My main target now is to help the team grind out good results and I will always fight for the team to make sure they are fighting for top honours.”

The towering Okumu featured for Kenya during the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations held in Egypt, where the team failed to make it past the group stage after losing to Algeria and Senegal.

On his Facebook page, the 22-year-old thanked his family for supporting him throughout his career.

Okumu wrote: “I am thrilled to announce I have agreed to sign for IF Elfsborg, and I have many thanks to give for this opportunity.

“I am very thankful to the Almighty God for how far he has brought me. To my mom, my dad, my sisters, my brother, and my entire family. Thank you.”

Okumu joined Chemelil Sugar after completing his high school education from Kakamega High School. He remained at the club for only six months before venturing outside the country where he joined Free State Stars of South Africa.

He left for the USA and joined AFC Ann Arbor in 2018 before leaving for his former club Real Monarchs.

IF Elfsborg are eighth in the 16-team league and have won three of their last five matches. Okumu could feature in the club's next match against Sirius on Saturday.

Their home ground is the Boras Arena, where they have played since April 17, 2005, and was founded in 1904.

Elfsborg have regularly participated in the qualifiers for the Champions LeagueEuropa League and won the 2008 Uefa Intertoto Cup.