In an exhilarating international friendly match on Thursday, September 7, 2023, at the Al Janoub Stadium, Kenya’s Harambee Stars pulled a stunning 2-1 victory away over the Qatar national football team.
The captivating encounter showcased the talent and determination of the Kenyan squad, as they faced off against the World Cup hosts in an unforgettable showdown.
The drama commenced in the 20th minute when Kenneth Muguna delivered a perfectly executed corner kick into the penalty area. Joseph Okumu, a defensive stalwart for Harambee Stars, rose above the Qatar defense to meet the ball with his head, skillfully directing it into the net.
This early goal sent shockwaves through the stadium, giving Kenya a well-deserved lead.
Qatar, however, was not to be outdone. In the 34th minute, they were awarded a penalty kick, which was expertly converted by their captain, Hassan Al-Haydos. The match was now tied, setting the stage for a thrilling second half.
As the teams returned to the pitch after the break, Harambee Stars made crucial substitutions. In the 46th minute, Ayub Timbe entered the game, injecting fresh energy and pace into the team.
Tactical wisdom prevailed again in the 70th minute when Amos Nondi replaced Masud Juma, adding depth to the midfield.
The closing moments of the match were nothing short of heart-pounding. In the 86th minute, Duke Abuya took the field, bringing versatility to the squad as he replaced Kenneth Muguna.
Then, in the 91st minute, Captain Michael Olunga orchestrated a moment of brilliance. His precise assist found Amos Nondi in a scoring position, and Nondi calmly slotted the ball into the net, securing the Harambee Stars’ victory with a final score of 2-1.
With this triumph, Harambee Stars demonstrated their mettle on the international stage and sent a clear message to football enthusiasts worldwide.
Harambee Stars will now return to Kenya on Friday, September 8, 2023, to continue their preparations for an upcoming match against South Sudan, scheduled for Tuesday, September 12, 2023, at MISC Kasarani, with kickoff set for 4 pm.
The Starting XI for Harambee Stars included Byrne Odhiambo in goal, supported by a formidable defense comprising Johnstone Omurwa, Joseph Okumu, Eric Ouma and Daniel Anyembe.
In midfield, Richard Odada, Anthony Akumu and Kenneth Muguna orchestrated the team’s movements, while the attacking trio of Masud Juma, Elvis Rupia, and Captain Michael Olunga provided the firepower.
On the bench, Head Coach Engine Firat had a wealth of talent in reserve, with players like Amos Nondi, Duke Abuya and Ayub Masika ready to make an impact if called upon.
Harambee Stars’ victory over Qatar at Al Janoub Stadium was a memorable moment for Kenyan football with 11,000 Kenyan fans purchasing the tickets.
This remarkable win not only boosts their confidence but also reaffirms Kenya’s growing presence on the global football stage.
The Kenyan team’s spirited performance serves as a testament to the bright future of football in the nation, filling fans with hope and excitement for what lies ahead.