Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Kenya set to name new foreign soccer coach

Henri Michel (L), during his days as Cote d'Ivoire's coach is seen during the second round match of World Cup Group C in Stuttgart, Germany, June 16, 2006. (Xinhua Photo/Qi Heng)

Aug. 22 (Xinhua) -- Kenya's new foreign national football coach widely tipped to be well-travelled Frenchman Henri Michel will be unveiled next week.

Football Kenya Federation (FKF) fell short of officially naming the man who will succeed sacked Francis Kimanzi while confirming on Tuesday they had secured the signature. "The coach was selected from the list of applicants and after consultations he was picked due to his impressive credentials and track record and will be unveiled next week on Aug. 28 after introducing him to our major stakeholders in football as well the ministry of sports and sponsors," federation boss, Sam Nyamweya, said in a statement."FKF has finally enlisted a professional coach who will take over our national team soon," Nyamweya added as reports surfaced Michel had landed the job after negotiations with him 10 days ago. "That is just speculation and we do not want to announce the successful candidate until he confirms to us when he is due to travel so that we send his ticket," said John Kariuki, the FKF media officer.

Kariuki was responding to the claims that the Frenchman who led Morocco, Tunisia and Cote d'Ivoire to the FIFA World Cup had gotten the nod from the final shortlist that included Adel Amrouche, Tom Saintfiet and former Le Bleu coach Raymond Domenech. Michel, who has also coached several African glamour clubs such as Zamalek (Egypt), Mamelodi Sundowns (South Africa) and Raja Casablanca (Morocco), was involved in the preparations of this year's Africa Cup of Nations co-hosts, Equatorial Guinea before he resigned after disagreeing with the country's federation over selection of players.

Kenya clashed out of the 2013 Nations Cup and only garnered one point in their 2014 World Cup qualifiers in May in a sequence of results that saw Kimanzi, re-appointed to the post last November, axed from the position. The country last qualified for the Nations Cup in 2004 and has never featured at a World Cup.  (Xinhua)

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