Barry Silah @obel_barry
From the moment the team was formed in 2012, Kangemi All Stars have had the knack of defying odds. It is a football club that encompasses talent and ambition and is already dreaming the big time.
This year, they won the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Division One Zone ‘A’ title and thus qualified for the prestigious National Super League (NSL)next year. In this campaign, they amassed a total 55 points with 17 wins and only two losses as they trounced bigwigs like Green Berets and Coast Stima in their wake.
Coach David ‘Sench’ Mahira, the unity and sense of purpose is what helped the target get achieved. “We are a family that has a solid bond. It is a group of young hungry and talented players who want to continuously get better. Their surrounding helps them understand the stakes, which have been their driving, force.
I believe commitment and hardwork has put my team in the spotlight,” he says. For the past three seasons, the slum-based team has been on upward trajectory proving everyone wrong. Even their most financially endowed opponents had a difficult time playing catch up especially at their fortress Kabete Technical Grounds.
Top three finishes have been their trademark save for 2016 when they almost got relegated due to financial hiccups as a result of sponsors pulling out unceremoniously. The self-sponsored outfit with an average age of 30 scored 46 goals and conceded just 20 in a total 23 matches.
While joining the NSL is an undoubtedly enviable task, coach Mahira believes the unit has to step up and be counted. “This is not going to be child’s play and so we have to be ready from the word go. I do not want to put pressure and state a target for my guys but ultimately every match will count. To me, learning is more important,” he offers.
Chairman Daniel Kiondi who is the sole sponsor of the outfit is raring to go far. “We struggled but I am happy we held on to clinch that slot to NSL. The bigger goal for me is giving back to the society that raised me.
These players have made the entire community proud and we look forward to going into the next stage with a bang. We only need financial support from people of goodwill for it is not easy running a club,” says the entrepreneur who has also revealed that he spends in the region of Sh5-8 million a year for operations.