Kenya to continue stadia project, despite losing football championship

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Only one of four venues earmarked for the January 12/February 4 competition was ready, leading the CAF executive committee to dump the east African economic powerhouse. Image courtesy: Stadium Consultancy
Only one of four venues earmarked for the January 12/February 4 competition was ready, leading the CAF executive committee to dump the east African economic powerhouse. Image courtesy: Stadium Consultancy

Kenya, stripped this weekend of the right to stage the 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN), will continue with a stadium construction project.

Only one of four venues earmarked for the January 12/February 4 competition was ready, leading the CAF executive committee to dump the east African economic powerhouse.

“The decision, though unfavourable, marks a new dawn for Kenyan football, in particular, and sport in general due to the ongoing infrastructure development,” said a Football Kenya Federation statement.

“[The project] endeavours to ensure that the country has at least four modern stadiums and a number of training pitches.

“The federation is of the view that it did everything humanly possible to ensure that CHAN 2018 became a reality, both to Kenyans and the entire east African region.

“Unfortunately, a lack of up-to-standard infrastructure to host the competition, and the need to improve the existing ones, meant Kenya would inevitably play second fiddle to better-placed countries that have invested heavily in infrastructure development over the years.”

There has been media speculation that Morocco or South Africa will replace Kenya as hosts of the 16-team tournament for home-based footballers.

This is the second time Kenya have been unable to meet the requirements to stage a CAF football competition after losing the right to host the 1996 Africa Cup of Nations.

The tournament was moved to South Africa, who defeated Tunisia in the final.

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