Talent and hard work are rewarded with success and fame – this is especially true for football. Scouts are constantly roaming the world to discover “fresh blood” on behalf of major international teams. This can result in familiar faces showing up at major clubs overseas.
If you check out the odds at Betway Tanzania, you’ll probably stumble upon quite a few names that you encounter when the Harambee Stars play, some of whom will probably step on the turf in the team’s upcoming rematch against Mali this Sunday.
Born and raised in Nairobi, Victor Wanyama started playing football in Kamukunji High School. Upon leaving school, he continued to play with JMJ Academy, while also playing with Nairobi City Stars, AFC Leopards, and, since 2007, Swedish team Helsingborg.
He started his professional career with Belgian club Beerschot in 2008. He soon caught the attention of Scottish team Celtic who tried to lure him away – but his club wouldn’t let him go. Ultimately, he left – he spent two years in Scotland before moving on to the Premier League – he played for Southampton and later for Tottenham Hotspur, becoming the first Kenyan to play in the EPL. He left the Spurs last year for the Canadian Major League Soccer team CF Montréal.
Wanyama has played more than 60 matches with the Harambee Stars.
Born in Mombasa, Bwana spent part of his childhood in a refugee camp in Kakuma before his family resettled in the US. He went to high school in Seattle where he joined the school’s team, then continued to play football throughout college, with the Washington Huskies. He went pro with the Tacoma Defiance, playing in the USL Championship, then left for the Seattle Sounders for a couple of seasons. Last year, he left Seattle to play with Nashville FC in the US Major League Soccer.
Born in Nairobi, the 25-year-old Ouma made his debut with Gor Mahia in 2016. His stay there was short – a year later, he went on to Kolkheti Poti, a team in the former Soviet republic of Georgia. From there, he switched to an Albanian team before ending up in Sweden, playing with Stockholm-based club Vasalund. Last year, he joined the Swedish top-flight team AIK.
Ouma has been part of the Harambee Stars since 2016.
Born and raised in Kisumu, Okumu went pro with Chemelil Sugar in 2014. His next stop was South Africa, where he joined the Free State Stars briefly before flying overseas to play in the USL Championship. In 2019, he left the US for Europe, joining the Swedish team IF Elfsborg. And this year, he left for Belgium – he signed with the First Division A team Gent this June.
Okumu has represented Kenya at a U21 and U23 level and played with the Harambee Stars 9 times so far.
Born and raised in Siaya, Oduor left Kenya early, joining the youth academy at the EPL team Leeds United in 2010, at the age of 11. He stayed with the team for two seasons upon turning senior but never made his debut in a league game. In 2019, he left Leeds for Barnsley, trading his position in a Premier League team for some action in the Championship.
So far, Oduor played once with the Harambee Stars, in a 2-1 friendly win against Zambia in October 2020.