Kenyan Football Fans Hoping to Meet Cristiano, Arsenal’s Saka in Qatar

Nairobi — For Mombasa resident William Maore, the best Christmas gift that would excite him this festive season is the sight of Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo lifting the World Cup trophy at the final on December 18.

Maore, a lifelong Cristiano fan, is hoping to be there in person when his idol leads his national team to their first-ever world title.

“I am a huge supporter of the Portuguese and believe they have some of the best players in the world. My mission, when I go to Qatar, is to see my team in action and if possible, to meet and have a picture moment with Cristiano. That would be a dream come true,” Maore says.

Also hoping for a football adventure in Qatar is Meru resident Duncan Wamalwa, who will be backing the Three Lions of England.

The English Premier League has a huge following in Kenya and Wamalwa is no exception as far as this bug is concerned.

A diehard disciple of current league leaders, Arsenal, Wamalwa is hoping and praying that he gets to meet Gunners’ players in Qatar, including England’s Bukayo Saka and Ben White as well as Frenchman William Saliba.

“I will be rooting for the Three Lions since I watch a lot of EPL and am an Arsenal fan. It would be a memorable experience to meet up with some of top Gunners like Saka, Ben White, Ramsdale and Saliba, among others,” Wamalwa says.

Watching the World Cup from the comfort of the stadium will bring back memories for Wamalwa, himself a former footballer.

“As a former footballer myself, watching other players in action will be truly a reflective moment for me. Maybe it will be an opportunity to evaluate areas in my playing career that may not have worked out well… it will be a learning experience,” he says.

Maore and Wamalwa are among four Kenyans who will be travelling to Qatar on all-expenses paid trip by Coca Cola Kenya.

The four were selected after participating in a competition organised by the company to choose winners of the grand prize of a trip to the World Cup.

Speaking at the same time, Coca-Cola Franchise Director for Kenya, Tanzania and Islands Oliver Soto encouraged the quartet to enjoy every minute of their time in Qatar.

“To the four of you… my advice to you is to enjoy every minute of the occasion. From the time you pack your bags and leave for the airport, enjoy every minute of it. The World Cup is a rich tradition. I remember when I was young and we were watching it on TV back home and we were all celebrating,” Soto said.

The company has also organised public viewing of various games of the World Cup at different locations around the country beginning this Sunday at Camp Toyoyo in Jericho, Nairobi.

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