Harambee Stars forward Cliff Nyakeya has revealed that the main difference between Kenyan football and the Egyptian league is the passion that Arabs have for their league.
Nyakeya has spent one year in Egypt since signing for league debutants Al Masry FC in July 2019. He sat down with this writer for an exclusive interview about life in the North African country.
“The Egyptian people love their own league so much, you’ll never find them watching a foreign league while there’s a local match,” the exciting playmaker said, adding that the league is very tough and competitive.
Nyakeya also talked extensively about how the COVID-19 pandemic affected him, as a young player in a foreign country.
The Egyptian league was suspended for five months between March and August over the dreaded virus and the former Mathare United star says he was lonely during the lockdown.
“When all football activities were suspended and I was forced to stay at home alone was the roughest time,” the soft-speaking player says.
The league later resumed on August 3. Unfortunately, Nyakeya’s club Al Masry was relegated and will play in league 2 in the coming season. The former Nyankoba Secondary School student declined to comment on whether he will still be with the club in the coming season.
The 2018 Kenyan Premier League midfielder of the year has been in good form for the national team, scoring two goals in the past three matches.
He says representing the national team is the greatest honour for any sportsman and scoring or assisting only adds to the thrill.
Kenya dimmed its chances of qualifying for a second successive AFCON tournament after losing to Comoros last month. Nyakeya maintains that we can still qualify, if results go our way.