December 8, 2021

Gor Mahia & ‘rebel’ clubs ready for FKF Premier League without signing pact

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Goal can now reveal the four ‘rebel’ clubs led by K’Ogalo are ready to play in the 2020-21 season without signing the undertaking

Gor Mahia and the three other ‘rebel’ clubs are ready to play in the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Premier League that will kick off on November 28.

A source close to the four teams has confirmed to Goal Gor Mahia, Mathare United, Ulinzi Stars, and Zoo FC, are ready to take part in the top-flight league but will not commit to the undertaking being signed by clubs as ordered by the FKF.

The FKF had asked all the 18 clubs in the top-flight to sign the broadcast deal with StarTimes, which the four clubs, led by Gor Mahia, have refused to budge.

Subsequently, FKF president Nick Mwendwa warned the clubs that they will be kicked out of the league if they don’t commit.

“Both clubs are willing and ready to compete in the league which starts on Saturday, they have vowed not to sign the broadcast deal, they don’t want to give in and sign the document,” a source, from one of the clubs and who did not want to be named, told Goal on Tuesday.

“As clubs, we don’t want to lose our broadcast rights, the rights were for the clubs even during the KPL era and what FKF are doing is to snatch what belongs to the clubs, it will not be possible, we will not give in, we will not sign the document but one thing I can assure you, we are ready to play in the league.”

As it stands, if the four clubs fail to sign the pact, then it means all their home matches will not be screened live by StarTimes.

“We don’t care about live matches, let them cover the 14 teams that have signed the undertaking, they can forget about showing our home matches, we are okay if they show our away matches but home matches belong to clubs and that is why we want to keep the broadcast rights,” the source added.

The source further said, despite being exempted from Covid-19 tests by the FKF, they will do their own tests and forward the bill to the federation.

On Monday, Mwendwa told Goal he will kick out the teams from the top-flight if they don’t sign the undertaking by season kick-off.

“We don’t have time to waste, it is either they sign or they forget about playing in the league,” Mwendwa told Goal on Monday.

“We only have one league in Kenya which is run by FKF, so I don’t know which league the four clubs will play in, it is either they sign or forget participating in the same.

“The 14 clubs that have signed the undertaking means they will have their matches aired live by broadcast partners StarTimes, so what will happen will happen to those that have not signed?

“Do you think StarTimes will air matches of teams that have not signed? It is very simple, they must sign to be with us or else, they will not be part of us.”