In July 2021, Harambee Stars midfielder Kenneth Mugambi Muguna left Gor Mahia for Tanzania side Azam FC.
The move elicited a lot of debate in the East African region with a section of Gor Mahia fans reading betrayal in the move at a time when they needed one of their best players to stay with them. For Tanzanians, it was a win since one of the best midfielders of the region was moving to the Tanzania top flight, Ligi Kuu.
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While a lot of talks was on his potential and how he was to help Azam stop the dominance from Simba SC and Yanga SC, a few talked about a change of environment would have an impact on the player and with the player yet to hit the ground running for his team, a few people have questioned his abilities. For Muguna, it is something he expected.
“I expected this (adapting to the Tanzanian league) to happen since a change of environment comes with a lot of challenges but am not worried at all. As a player, you want to give your best in games and as a player who scores and assists goals, you have to ensure that you do that everywhere you go but that hasn’t been the case here.
“I think I am doing everything right and it’s just a matter of time until the statistics start coming. Fans love statistics and if you don’t have them then no one will rate you. All I can say is I have adapted well and I know I’ll be good in the coming games,” Muguna opens up to Pepeta.
While the stint in Tanzania has been short, Muguna admits that the love the Tanzanians have for their local games beats that of Kenya even though he thinks a lot still needs to be done by both countries to elevate the football standards in the region.
“There is a lot of love for the local game here (in Tanzania) that’s why there is pressure on players to perform. You don’t want to disappoint such people who give their all to their teams. I don’t like comparisons because each country has their strength and weakness but we can all agree that both have a lot to do in order to improve the football in East Africa,” Muguna opines.
In his career, Muguna has been linked with a move to Europe due to his potential. And while he had one stint with the continent when Albania side KF Tirana roped his services in 2018, it was a short-lived experience that only lasted for six months; an outing that he says was an eye-opener.
“As a footballer, people will always question your moves. Why did he move to club A and not club B? A lot was said when I went to Tirana and it was even worse because I didn’t last long in Albania. Two things, the stint was short-lived since the club had salary issues and two, I had a thigh injury which kept me for a longer period of time.
“I know I have been linked with a return to Europe but my dream now is to help Azam lift a trophy this year. I want to create history with Azam and that’s what I’m solely concentrating on currently,” he adds.
Azam who are currently placed seventh on the log despite their huge spending at the start of the season have already parted ways with coach George Lwandamina and will hope for a change of fortunes in the coming days.
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