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Harambee Stars on track and should not lose focus - Francis Xavier

20:06 EAT 09/09/2019
Erick Johanna of Harambee STars and Kenya v Uganda.
The retired footballer believes the national team is taking the right development path which should be encouraged by all Kenyans

The Harambee Stars are on the right track and they should not lose focus, former AFC Leopards midfielder Francis Xavier has urged.

The Kenyan team were held to a 1-1 draw by Uganda in an international friendly on Sunday and Xavier believes it proves there is development in the team.

The former Vihiga United assistant coach supported Football Kenya Federation (FKF) for setting up structures which will help in talent development but added there is a need to invest in local coaches as well.

“We are on track and we should not lose focus and the federation has to give local coaches and players just one favour; they should have confidence in the team and give support which will be required more as we move forward,” Xavier told Goal.

“We need to be patient and build our team. We need also to have the confidence with our own local coaches and we will have something to celebrate thereafter result-wise if we do it.

“FKF should invest in coaches by sponsoring them for refresher courses in order to update their knowledge of the game.”

He also objected to the fact the Cranes are seen as regional giants compared to the Harambee Stars.

“Uganda are not giants per se, it is only us who have made them look as if they are when they are actually not,” Xavier added.

“Our U15 were eliminated by Uganda [in the Cecafa Cup finals in Eritrea] which means there is something which they are doing right and we are getting it wrong.

“But of recent years, I have seen some positive moves by FKF especially in the establishment of youth structures and now we have U15, U17, and U20 teams and finally the senior team. This the proper way to identify and nurture talent.”

The Harambee Stars have two more friendly matches lined up - against Libya and Mozambique.