Harambee Stars defender Philemon Otieno has expressed contentment with his experience in the Kenyan National team.
This as he noted that his call up is a challenge to local-based players to push themselves even more.
Philemon, who has featured in the right back position for Kenyan Premier League Champions Gor Mahia, notes that he has gained a lot of confidence playing in Africa’s premier club continental championships, and is now ready for the big stage.
“My call up to the national team is a motivation to local based players. It is not easy to earn a chance (in the national team) but I think with hard work and patience, things can work out,” said Philemon.
“I have gained a lot of confidence playing in the club continental championships, and I believe the experience will make it easier for me in the national team,” he added.
Philemon is part of nine defenders called up to the Harambee Stars team that is currently in a three-week pre-AFCON camp in France.
The team got on its marks in Marcoussis, Paris, on Saturday, June 1, 2019. Four training sessions have since been done so far, with two friendly matches against Madagascar and DR Congo in the pipeline.
Stars have also been boosted by the arrival in camp of Sweden based forward Christopher Mbamba, who is now among 18 players already in camp. The remaining nine, who are still on duty at their respective parent clubs, will be checking in in due course.
AFCON Provisional Squad
Players in bold will be checking in in the course of next week
Patrick Matasi, John Oyemba, Faruk Shikalo
Abud Omar, Joash Onyango, Joseph Okumu, Musa Mohammed, David Owino, Bernard Ochieng, Brian Mandela, Philemon Otieno, Eric Ouma
Victor Wanyama, Anthony Akumu, Ismael Gonzalez, Ayub Timbe, Francis Kahata, Ovella Ochieng, Dennis Odhiambo, Eric Johanna, Paul Were, Cliffton Miheso, Johanna Omollo
John Avire, Masud Juma, Christopher Mbamba, Michael Olunga