Europe and South America are the only continents that have won world cup in the history of international football. The main reason why these two continents produce the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, and keep on winning world cups is because they nurture football talents from very early age.
Kenya is on the right path even though there is still much to be done. The country’s football academies have produced some of the greatest footballers including Victor Wanyama and Michael Olunga who play in English Premier League and La Liga respectively.
Below is a list of 5 football academies that have produced Kenya’s top cream footballers.
Liberty Sports Academy
The academy is based in Nairobi has over 25 youngsters who turn up to be fed with football basics every morning on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Sundays and over the holidays.
Trainings are held at the City Stadium over the mentioned days. Liberty Sports Academy has produced Kenya’s most potent strikers such as Michael Olunga, Nicholas Meja and Charles Bruno who have played for various KPL teams.
JMJ academy in Nairobi West has produced several footballers who play in top flight European leagues. Tottenham midfielder Victor Wanyama is a product of JMJ academy.
Other talents nurtured at JMJ academy include Ayub Timbe who currently plays as a forward for Beijing Renhe in the China League One, Johanna Omolo who plays for Belgian club, Royal Antwerp and Edwin Otieno Oluoch who played for Belgian Third division C side Sk Moelingen and several other clubs.
Ligi Ndogo Soccer Club
Ligi Ndogo was founded in 2002 with the view of creating an enabling environment for young people to nurture their soccer skills outside a normal learning curriculum.
Notable graduates of the academy include Swedish international John Guidetti, Liberian former international Alex Karmo and Kenyan international Ayub Masika, Humphrey Mieno, Edwin Lavatsa and Jesse Were.
Jesse Were currently plays for Zesco United in the Zambian Super League, Humphrey Mieno plays for Tusker, Edwin Lavatsa plays for Bandari FC while Ayub Masika plays for Beijing Renhe in the Chinese Super League.
FISA soccer academy
Friendship International Sports Academy (FISA) was founded in 2006 by its directors, Dr. Maurice Awang Owuor and Mr. Amit Shah.
The academy draws children and teenagers from neighboring neighborhoods of Mukuru slum and South B.
Some of FISA graduates include; Paul Were who plays for Kalamata FC in Greece, Kevin Omondi who played for Gor Mahia and Moroka Swallows in South Africa, Musa Mohamed who plays for Gor Mahia and Victor Ashinga who plays for Thika United.
National Youth Talent Academy (NYTA)
NYTA’s formation was inspired by the 2008 post-election violence. The academy was formed with the aim of tapping raw talents that were being mismanaged by politicians for their selfish gains.
NYTA alumni include Musa Bashir who plays for Hong Dong FC in China, Abdul Malik who plays in Sweden, Andrew Murunga (Tusker), John Nairuka (Thika United) and Dashan Lebembe (Kakamega Homeboys).
Ulinzi FC is the biggest beneficiary with four ex-NYTA players – Justin Olwang’a, Anthony Muriithi, Peter Opiyo and Enoch Nabwire.