By Joel Masibo
Russian football agent Dimitri Seluk considers firefighters from Belarus better opponents than Kenya as the two sides lock horns in an international friendly on Monday in Turkey.
In his interview with Sports.ru.com, the former Yaya Toure agent did not mince his words as Harambee Stars prepare to take on the 2018 FIFA World Cup host nation. The East African nation will be using the match as a warm up for the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.
After beating Iran away and shockingly losing to South Sudan at Kasarani recently, Kenya will be seeking to bounce back to their good form against the European outfit at the Mardan Stadyumu in Antalya, Turkey, a fixture that Seluk believes adds no value to the Russian side.However, Seluk regards them too weak for Russia.
“Team Kenya? If they had taken firefighters from Belarus, I think they would have put up more resistance. I can’t understand why this is being done. I understand the political motives, but Kenya – where did they play? 109th place in the FIFA rankings?”
Ranked 39th in the world, Russia is far much a strong opposition for Engin Firat’s charges who will be making history playing against a European team for the first time.
“Why is this Kenya needed? For what?,” Seluk questioned. “From a sports point of view, this is empty. From a political point of view, I don’t want to rant on this topic. Whether there are any political dividends from this or not, I don’t know.
“From a sports point of view, you can call Sasha Mostovoy, Karpin, Arshavin (all retired). Believe me, they will beat Kenya,” the agent added.
Russia are currently under suspension from FIFA due to the country’s attack on Ukraine. The side has moved to play African nations – as recently showcased by their match against Cameroon last Thursday.
“Guys, contact me, I will bring you the African team to play. Or you can simply create some kind of national team. Play with a team of foreign players playing in Russia,” Seluk added.
Meanwhile, Harambee Stars head coach Engin Firat has come under fire for continuously sidelining sensational Gor Mahia forward Benson Omala in his squad, even as the team struggles before the opponent’s net.