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Mathare United to hand walkover to Bandari due to financial problems

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  • Mathare are currently placed bottom in the FKF Premier League standings
  • The club says it cannot financially finish the season
  • They were due to play Bandari Sunday afternoon

Mathare United have said they will not honour their FKF Premier League match against Bandari FC at the Kasarani Annex on Sunday due to financial constraints. The Slum Boys have said they do not have the financial ability to organise the match at the Annex and will thus not honour the fixture.

A press statement from club chairman Bob Munro said the club has endured a tough financial period this season, and has insisted their season might be over unless something drastic happens.

“Today is a sad day in the 35-year history of the Mathare Youth Sports Association (MYSA) and Mathare United FC (MUFC). lt’s an especially sad and even painful day for me and the MUFC staff, coaches, players and their families as well as for the tens of thousands of youth in the Mathare and neighbouring slums who dream of helping themselves and their families escape poverty by someday playing for Mathare United,” a statement from Munro read.

“Since July 2021, I and our CEO still relentlessly tried to secure sponsors for this season but without success. This week the funds of our club, my family and many friends of our team were completely exhausted and we’re sadly unable to honour today’s match,” it further stated.

Mathare United players celebrate one of their goals against City Stars

The club supremo has also insinuated that the financial hit many corporates suffered due to the COVID-19 pandemic has made it further difficult for them to land sponsors.

He has also gone on to blame the beleaguered Football Kenya Federation (FKF) for its woes, saying they have played a huge role in Mathare’s financial difficulties.

“The increasingly negative publicity about FKF also discouraged many companies. The FIFA ban then made the already difficult financial situation of clubs even worse. Today, our team is only one among nearly half of our top clubs, especially our community-based clubs, which are now struggling with serious financial problems,” Munro said in his statement.

Munro also pointed to FKF’s alleged hostile take over of the league activities, the expansion of the league to 18 teams which subsequently led to the exit of broadcast sponsors Supersport and their alleged failure to pay club’s royalties from their last broadcast sponsorship as reasons for their current predicament.

The Slum Boys have had a difficult season and were already wallowing in relegation, with eight rounds of matches before the season ends. If they go on and make good their threat not to honour Sunday’s fixture, then they will be two other walk-overs away from being officially relegated.

John Kamau was unveiled as new Mathare United coach

According to the FKF rule book, a team will be relegated from the league if they hand over three walkovers in a season.

Two seasons ago, Chemelil Sugar, who were also in the same predicament as Mathare due to the collapse of their sponsors, were relegated after handing three walkovers following inability to finance their matches.

Mathare have been struggling financially for more than five seasons with sponsors walking in and out and finally, the noose has finally tightened around their necks.

Munro is however hopeful that before their next match, they can find a temporary solution to enable them finish the season.

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