Following the debarment of three Kenya national U17 football team players from the ongoing U17 AFCON qualifiers in Tanzania by the Confederation of African Football (CAF), Football Kenya Federation wishes to take this earliest opportunity to state the following:
- As required by both CAF and FIFA, all players that were named in the final squad of the Kenya national U17 football team, currently in Tanzania, underwent MRI tests to ascertain whether they were within the required age limit.
- In total, 30 players were subjected to the mandatory tests, with the same confirming that only two were not of the required age bracket. The two were subsequently dropped from the squad prior to the team leaving for Tanzania, thus giving the Federation no reason to doubt the eligibility of the remaining 28, out of which 18 were selected to represent the country in the U17 AFCON qualifiers.
In view of the foregoing, FKF has written to both CAF and the hospital that performed the MRI tests back home with the aim of not only resolving the same but also ascertaining what caused the discrepancies in the two tests that were meant to serve the same purpose.
Moreover, the Federation wishes to reiterate that it remains committed to the spirit of fair play and has at no time, whether real or imagined, planned and/or considered the fielding of ineligible players as an option to gain an unfair advantage in any footballing activity, either locally or internationally.
In the meantime, the Federation wishes the U17’s the best of luck in the qualifiers, this even as we await a response from CAF on the subject matter.