‘Ghost’ tells latest star Hassan to stay humble

Harambee Stars head coach Jacob ‘Ghost’ Mulee has hailed Bandari winger Abdallah Hassan as a “bold” player who is not frightened by the big stage or magnitude of the opponent.

The coach has advised the right-wing attacker to remain humble and keep working hard in order to take his career to the next level after a string of stellar performances with the national team in the recent matches.

Hassan has scored three goals in the last three Harambee Stars matches, against Tanzania (international friendly), Egypt and Togo – the last two being African Cup of Nations qualifiers of the recently failed campaign.

Being a new member of the first team, Mulee wants to see consistency which he says can only come with a humble mind.

“In the camp I call him Mhuni, because he is fearless. Look at his confidence, you give him a chance and he takes it with the seriousness it deserves. Three goals in three matches shows you he is a determined player, though young. His journey has just started, and has given us some solution for the right wing,” noted Mulee.

Mulee however underlines the next call up not only for him but the entire squad will be based on what happens between now and the next camp.

“If he maintains the mojo that will be key to his development, because there are players who shine momentarily and develop that sense of entitlement, thinking they deserve more than others. He just needs to keep his composure as we have advised him, and he will walk quite an exciting journey,” he said.

Prior to the recent caps under Mulee, Hassan was a member of the immediate former coach Francis Kimanzi but had not made a cut into the first team especially whenever the foreign based players showed up.

During the 2019 Council of East and Central Africa Football Association (CECAFA) Senior Challenge Cup in Uganda, Kimanzi had Hassan in his team and he went on to score three goals.

At the time, Kimanzi was clear he wanted to test a number of players to beef up his regular squad that he had over time built with his predecessor Sebastien Migne, as Stars qualified and played in the 2019 AFCON edition.

“I have challenged them to show me they deserve to be in my team for the AFCON and World Cup qualifiers, and they are showing something…” Kimanzi said, referring to Hassan and Ulinzi Stars striker Oscar Wamalwa, who has however dipped in form in the recent past failing to capture Mulee’s attention.

If Mulee’s promise that the door is open to all players including the foreign based one he dropped for the just concluded FIFA window is anything to go by, the local lads including Hassan will have a daunting task to keep their places going into the 2022 World Cup qualifiers in June.

“I have no message for some players, I have a message for all Kenyan players. You can be called to represent your country anytime if you are playing well for your club. That is the secret, but we will not call players just because of the leagues they play in or their past performances. What is important is the current form,” summed up Mulee.

Apart from Hassan, Mulee and his assistants Twahir Muhiddin, Ken Odhiambo and William Muluya have shown faith in mostly local based players, whose general performance in the recent matches is satisfactory according to the veteran tactician.

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