Unearthing the next Victor Wanyama, playing future friendly matches in Kenya and improving stadium safety and security in Africa are just some of the benefits that could come from a proposed partnership between Everton and the Kenyan Football Federation. Everton chief executive Robert Elstone and commercial director Alan McTavish were in Africa last week for a trip described as a “courtesy call.”
They met with FKF president Nick Mwendwa at the Federation’s offices in Kasarani – and while the visit was more of a fact-finding mission, the Blues are keen to tap into the football and business opportunities which exist in Africa. The visit made national news in Kenya, where Tottenham star Victor Wanyama is the nation’s poster boy.
Mr Mwenda said: “Everton have paid us a courtesy call today to have some discussions around how we can partner in the future and to share some insights in the game. With their experience and our vision, we can work together in the future.” He added: “We are very keen to look and see how we can help develop (football in Kenya).
Mr Elstone added: “I know what a great player Victor (Wanyama) is and what he has done in the toughest league in the world. That clearly shows there is some potential here and some of the ingredients are there. We will need to collaborate and see how best we can give them a chance at the top.
FKF chief Nick Mwenda believes Kenyan clubs could benefit enormously by visiting Goodison and implementing some of the practices already established at Everton. “We want to invite some clubs to go to Everton and see how they do their things,” he explained. “They will also have a few things to learn from us – probably some of our young players can be given a platform or maybe a trial in a few years.
“Our clubs will have a lot to learn in terms of structures and academies, financial accounts and management. We can learn from the best, take what fits us. It will take a long time but it would be worthwhile.”