Harambee Stars striker Michael Olunga has opened up on life in Qatar less than a month after he signed for Doha based Al Duhail SC.
Olunga has made three appearances for Al Duhail and scored three goals in the process. Despite missing the back of the net in his first two games, Olunga found his mojo in the Emir cup and bagged a hattrick for his new side.
Following his exploits in that game, Olunga has already become the talk of the Qatar Stars League and the Al Duhail SC faithfuls are counting on him to help bring them glory in the FIFA Club World Cup when they face African Champions Al Ahly.
“It was a fantastic moment to score my first Hat-trick here in Qatar. It was my third game.. I did not score in my first two games but on that day I was hungry from the beginning to show people what am really capable of. The big moment came, a hat-trick and it could have been more” said Olunga in an interview with beIN sports.
Despite moving to a new league and a country with a different culture, Olunga maintains that he is adapting well thanks to the massive support he gets from teammates and the coaches. He specifically hailed 33 year old Qatar international Ali Hassan Afif Yahya for helping him settle well at Al Duhail.
Afif is of Tanzanian decent and had his father, Hassan Afif play for Simba SC before relocating to Qatar where he was neutralized.
He will grace the FIFA Club World Cup for the second time in his career. His first appearance in the competition came ten years ago, when he played for Al Sadd, the then Asian champions.
“There is a big cultural difference between Japan and Qatar but as a player you have to be able to adapt to these situations and transition because it is part of Football. Right now am still in that moment where am adapting to my teammates, to the way the team wants me to play but at the end of the day I thank the coach staff and players.. They are really trying to make my much more life easier and I hope I can try to give my best to this team and deliver” he said.
“All my teammates are friendly the dressing room is quite lively. I have made a a couple of new friends and also Afif is a Tanzanian so we speak the same language and this makes it quite easy for me” he added.
Olunga’s Al Duhail will take on Al Ahly on February 4 at the Education City Stadium in Al Rayyan with the winner booking a semi-final date against European champions Bayern Munich on February 7.
Ahead of the clash, Olunga stated that while they respect Al Ahly, they will go all out to win the match.
“Football is a game we play week in week out. In every game you have to be under pressure to deliver because it’s not a friendly game we are going to play. It’s going to be like a final. Al Ahly are African Champions, they are strong and we respect them but don’t fear them” he said.