Harambee Stars captain Victor Wanyama has revealed Football Kenya Federation wanted to send Brian Mandela home after sustaining a knee injury during Kenya’s 2019 African Cup of Nations (Afcon) camp in France.
The towering defender was injured with 13 days to the start of the tournament, affecting then coach’s Sebastien Migne’s plans. The experienced defender underwent surgery and joined Harambee Stars in Egypt.
Federation’s head Nick Mwendwa had stated that they decided to take the injured player to Africa’s elite competition.
“We could let him go back to his club in that condition and take responsibility to ensure he gets well. After the operation, he joined the team in Egypt and just encouraged his team-mates as they took part in the tournament,” Mwendwa told The Standard.
However, in a recent interview with MGTV, Wanyama revealed FKF was forced to take Mandela with them to Egypt.
“When Niang [Mandela] was injured, FKF wanted to send him home,” the Montreal Impact midfielder said.
“But I refused; it could have been unfair for a player to be sent home and he had done his best to get into the squad. So I told them it is not possible and offered to cater for his expenses. It is when they agreed to tag him along.”
SPORTS AFRICA understands Gor Mahia defender Philemon Otieno was also injured while on duty for the national team but ended up treating his injury with his own resources.
“I called the president [Mwendwa] over the Mbish [Otieno] issue and he said the player joined the Harambee Stars camp injured. But I asked if the federation can help him and he promised to work on the issue.
“A couple of days down the line it had not happened and I called him [Mwendwa] again. He said Mbish has been vocal in the media. I did not want back and forth with the Federation so I just let it go.”
The current regime has been accused of funds embezzlement and on Thursday, May 21, Mwendwa was grilled by the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) over the matter.