Kariobangi Sharks FC will play Everton FC on July 7th 2019 at the Kasarani Stadium. The English Premier League side will travel to Nairobi for their first pre-season friendly. The match is organized by SportPesa who are also the official sponsors of the visitors.
Sharks landed the rights to play Everton after winning the 2019 edition of the SportPesa Cup in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania,earlier in the year, by beating Bandari FC 1-0 in the final.
The game will be historic for the Sharks as it is the first time that the club will be playing a European based side. For Everton, it will be their second visit to East Africa after they played Gor Mahia in Tanzania back in 2017.
Ms Lynda Ambiyo, the Sharks C.E.O termed this as an important milestone for the club:
“To play a team that has the experience of playing in the English Premier League will be a wonderful milestone for club. Everton is a big team, we are excited by this opportunity and we look forward to make the most of it. We also look forward to a wonderful game and an enriching experience off the pitch also. There is a lot to be learned.”
Captain Ronald Karauri, the SportPesa C.E.O on his part was full of praise to the Sharks:
“Kariobangi Sharks FC is a team that has defied many odds to first make it to Kenya’s top league, the SportPesa Premier League, earning their stripes by winning the Shield Cup in Kenya, and to our delight, the SportPesa Cup tournament in Tanzania which was held in January. These boys have all it takes to host Everton for this historic match. It will be a record making match as well as a much-needed catalyst to boost careers in local football as well as sports development in the country.”
And in a statement issued at the Everton website, Alan McTavish, Commercial Director at Everton Football Club, said:
“We are extremely excited to be heading back to Africa to play against the Kariobangi Sharks FC. We were given an exceptionally warm welcome when we played in Tanzania in 2017 and are looking forward to visiting Kenya and what we know will be a fantastic experience in Kasarani.
It will be the first time in this century that an English Premier League team will be visiting Kenya. The Sharks therefore have all the reasons to put their best foot forward.