Harambee Stars coach Stanley Okumbi defended his call up of banned Kariobangi Sharks defender Pascal Ogweno, despite an outcry from fans, saying that his decision was purely based on merit.
The Kenyan Premier League’s Independent Disciplinary and Complaints Committee on August 7 handed Ogweno a six-match ban after finding him guilty of gross misconduct.
Despite the fact that he has just began serving his ban, Okumbi named Ogweno in the Stars squad for a series of friendly matches next week. Talking to Nation Sport on Wednesday, Okumbi said: “I know about the IDCC decision, and I respect it. My decision was based on the fact that Ogweno is one of the best centre backs we have in the country. I want him to be part of our Chan team.”
Okumbi said that he analyses and selects players individually, and not on the strength of their team’s performances.
“For me it is unfair to look at a player on the strength of his team. Everybody knows that AFC Leopards are doing badly at the moment, but when I look at the performances of players like (Robinson) Kamura, even in instances when the team ends up losing, I feel convinced that they are worthy of the national team,” he said.
Divock chose Belgium in 2014 despite several overtures by then Stars coach Adel Amrouche.