Kenya’s Under-20 boys and girls national teams are set to play in Spain in the invitational tournament, in a partnership between the Sports Ministry and the Spanish Nastic Soccer Academy.
The March date encounter, Sports Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba said the trip will afford the Kenyan teams a perfect platform to sharpen their talons as they prepare for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers later in the year.
The players were largely selected from a pool identified by scouts deployed by the Ministry of Sports at the 2023 Talanta Hela Under-19 football tournament that concluded in December. The final selection followed an intensive one-week special training camp at the Moi Stadium, Kasarani in Nairobi.
Namwamba said there have been deliberate and sustained efforts to nurture a potent team that will fly the country’s flag in major competitions in the future.
He revealed that the government pumped a whopping Sh267 million into the school games, music, drama, and film festivals.
It is this camp that fed the Talanta Hela U19 Inter-county tournament that climaxed on Jamhuri Day, with Busia County winning the girls’ trophy and Homabay clinching the boy’s title.
“The same camp also inspired the exciting Kenya U18 boys’ team (Junior Stars) that lit up the Cecafa Junior tournament in Kisumu and Kakamega. Indeed, the genius Talanta Hela Tournament has given birth to Kenya U17 and U20 national junior teams for boys and girls, which are being prepared for Fifa U17 and U20 World Cup qualifiers starting 2024,” Namwamba stated.