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20.12.2002 Football News

We'll Defeat Ghana - Coach Olaba

By The Nation (Nairobi)
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The national under-17 team coach, Tom Olaba, says he believes his team has the capacity to upset Ghana in tomorrow's qualifying match for next year's Africa Under-17 Championships.

Olaba was speaking at Kasarani just before naming the 18 players who will be doing duty for the country at Kasarani as the Kenyan youths seek their first ever appearance at the continental youth tournament.

"I know we will be starting as underdogs against the Ghanaians on Saturday but my target and that of the team is to win and I believe this team has capability to beat Ghana," said Olaba.

Olaba said he will release the names of the starting 11 on the eve of the match but it is likely he will start with Francis Ochieng in goal with Hilary Omondi, Bonvinger Misigo, Kevin Oluoch and Wilson Anyona in defence.

Captain McDonald Mariga, Hassan Aden, Antony Katana and Joseph Waweru should be preferred in midfield with Nicodemus Anunda and George Odari and Joshua Ademba leading the attack.

Odari scored twice in the Kenyan's 2-2 draw with the Malawi under-23 side a few weeks ago and is one of the men Olaba will be relying on for goals.

Olaba appealed to the fans to come and cheer the team as they do when the senior national team is playing and also thanked Nairobi Sports House for donating training shirts to the team.

Meanwhile, the Ghanaians were being taken through their paces at Ruaraka ground by their coach Silas Tetteh. They are slight in stature but look very crafty and quick on the ball.

The Kenyans, who have bigger men in their ranks like Misigo, Mariga, and Anunda may wish to capitalise on the advantage their size by muscling them off the ball but they will have to be careful not give away free kicks on the edge of the box because the Ghanaians look extremely dangerous from set pieces.

They took time practising free kicks with frightening accuracy and if the Kenyans are careless in defence, they will be punished.

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