Ulinzi Stars head coach Benjamin Nyangweso has confirmed the club will miss the services of four players during the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) opener against Kisumu All-Stars.
The 2010 KPL winners will be away to face the league’s new side and Nyangweso has revealed Churchill Muloma, Omar Mbongi, Ibrahim Shambi and Brian Birgen are set to miss the clash set to be played at Moi Stadium in Kisumu on Saturday.
Muloma will miss the match as he is away on study leave while defenders Mbongi and Birgen are nursing injuries sustained during the East African Military Games held at Kasarani in August.
Kenyan international Shambi is away on compassionate leave and will miss the opener too.
“A few players will not be with us but it should not be a very big problem,” Nyangweso told the club’s official website.
“I am sure of the quality of players I have and I remain hopeful we will give this season a good start.”
The coach further warned his players from underrating Kisumu All-Stars who won KPL promotion after finishing second to Wazito FC in the 2018/19 season in the National Super League (NSL).
“We play a team which has just been promoted and is very ambitious so we will have to employ caution but I have told my players and they know it too, a win in the first game is very crucial,” he warned.
Nyangweso further lauded Ulinzi Stars’ participation in the military competition.
“The games were a crucial part of our preseason and I am happy with what we did as a team,” Nyangweso continued.
“It was a good measure for our fitness levels and gave me a picture of which players to use under certain circumstances.
“The lessons we took from the games are a lot and we will strive to implement the positives in the league.”
The Soldiers will miss the services of assistant captain Hassam Mohammed who quit the club in the ongoing transfer window to undertake further military training.