Nairobi City Stars have retained the services of 18 players who helped them to the Kenyan Premier League promotion.
The club has already lost the services of goalkeeper Levis Opiyo to Gor Mahia and with some yet to sign new deals, City Stars coordinator Samson Otieno is delighted that they have been able to keep the core unit of the team.
“The core unit that kept Simba wa Nairobi at the top of the NSL for a better part of the season to eventually promote the team is still intact heading to next season. This is important as it guarantees us continuity.
“When we started out last season a number of players were on one-year engagements but mid-way through we extended those contracts as the view to the Premier League became crystal clear. Just two teenagers – striker Vincent ‘Jamaica’ Otieno and midfielder Elvis Ojiambo started out with long term deals.
“Part of the early players to extend their contracts were defender Wycliffe Otieno who added another year as well as midfielder Anthony Kimani, long-serving defender Calvin Masawa, defensive midfielder Charles Otieno Oduro and striker Davis Agesa who committed to a further two years.
“Others that followed in staying at City Stars for two more years include offensive midfielder Oliver Maloba, striker Ebrima Sanneh, defenders Salim ‘Shitu’ Abdalla and Edwin Buliba. Keeper Ronny Kagunzi and left-back Wesley Onguso were the latest with each adding a year to their contracts.
“January arrivals Peter Opiyo and Azizi Okaka have a season to go while keeper Jacob Osano, returning winger John Kamau and striker Ezekiel Odera have two more seasons.
“Despite having the core intact we are also in the market to fill up some positions such as in goalkeeping after lead custodian Levis Opiyo officially left the club and just in case some of out of contract players chose to head elsewhere.
“Had the coronavirus pandemic not struck, City Stars would have concluded its engagement with players for next season as far back as April,” Otieno told the club's official website.
Players whose contract expired but have expressed an interest in extending their stay include; Noah Abich, Eric Ochieng, Tedian Esilaba, Kevin Okumu, David Gateri and Jimmy Bageya.