August 4, 2021

Harambee Starlets’ World Cup pursuit, grassroots football dominates FKF general meeting agenda

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The AGM was the first one to be conducted by the federation since it held its regional and national elections in October

Harambee Starlets and development of grassroots soccer dominated the agenda of the first Football Kenya Federation annual general meeting since the re-election of Nick Mwendwa as president.

Mwendwa believes the expansion of slots at the World Cup gives Harambee Starlets a wider opportunity to feature at the competition for the first time. Africa saw their slots increased from the usual three to six teams for the 2023 competition.

“We feel we have an opportunity [qualify for the 2023 World Cup] for sure. We want to make our women’s football grow by being in the World Cup,” Mwendwa said according to Nation Sports.

“Every county, especially where possible should have a youth and senior women’s team. Enrol your teams and let’s ensure the women’s team [Harambee Starlets] grows because our dream is to be in the World Cup in 2023.”

Mwendwa also stated the development of football at the lower levels will facilitate the federation in achieving its goals.

“Make sure in every county, more teams are enrolled. Ensure we have youth teams, as you know youths are the foundation of our game. Make sure your leagues are vibrant,” he added.

“I have no doubt if we do this, in the next four years, we will be where we want to be.”

On her part, vice-president Doris Petra stressed the need to develop football at the grassroots level especially with increased support from Fifa.

“In every county and sub-county, let us work hard so that we have prosperous grassroots football going on both for men and women,” Petra said.

“We need to do much more in the development of women’s football. We have a lot of support from Fifa now for women’s football but we can only benefit from it if we are doing something on the ground. At that level, nobody from the national office will come to do it for you.”

“As FKF, we are discussing the possibility of having youth development centres in every county, where all talents are developed. It is more critical for developing women’s football because the only safe place where girls currently play football is within the schools.”

The federation also discussed how it plans to use its Ksh1.4 billion budget. FKF expects Ksh915 million of the total budget to come from local receipts while Ksh420 million will come from Fifa’s grants.

Caf is expected to pump Ksh20 million into FKF’s coffers.