National football team head coach Sebastian Migne has gone for two months without salary, something that could jeopardise the team’s preparations for their next Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.
Kenya will play against Ethiopia in a do-or-die fixtures on October 10 and 14 for the home match and return leg respectively and it is not clear whether Migne—who is rumoured to be earning around Sh1.5 million a month—would have been paid by then.
Migne salary is believed to be paid by the Ministry of Sports, but the government has taken longer than expected to remit his dues.
According to a senior Football Kenya Federation (FKF) official who sought anonymity, the team which beat the Black Stars of Ghana 1-0 to revive their hopes of qualifying for the continental showpiece for the first time in over 14 years, before stopping Malawi 1-0 in an international friendly, used Sh19 million to prepare for the two matches, but allegedly received no support from government.
“Our officials have been camping at the ministry for many days but in vain. No money is being released for the national team despite our proposals. Now we owe Utalii huge debts for using their facility in the build-up to the two matches, the coach has not been paid and we had to borrow money to meet the remaining expenses including air tickets and players’ allowances,” said the source.
He added: “This time we have a realistic chance of qualifying, we just need to beat Ethiopia home and away and we qualify. This is the time that we seriously need to be supported financially so that we prepare well for the two crucial matches that will determine our fate in the qualifiers.”
Kenya are currently on three points in Group F, same as Ghana, Sierra Leone and Ethiopia whom if they beat home and away, and get a draw against lowly-ranked Sierra Leone in Nairobi, they will guarantee their participation in the continental competition for the first time since 2004.
“To prepare properly for the two matches against Ethiopia, we have a budget of Sh25 million. With this money, we will be certain of victory. Deputy President William Ruto promised the team Sh50 million if we qualify for Afcon, but how will we qualify without support?” posed the official.
He added: “The DP also promised the team a bus by January and we are yet to receive it eight months later.”