Africa Kenya : Nigerian midfielder Mariga back in squad

Inter-Milan midfielder Macdonald Mariga makes a return to the national team Harambee Stars after a year’s absence.

Mariga has been called-up for next month’s international friendly match against Libya in Tunisia. The match will be played on February 6, a day that has been set aside by world governing body Fifa for international friendly matches.

It is crucial match for Stars who are scheduled to play Nigeria in early March as the Fifa World Cup matches resume.

Mariga has not played for Stars since he declined to feature in an Africa Cup of  Nations qualifier against Togo last year after a disagreement over refunds with the Football Kenya Federation (FKF).

After that he suffered a near career threatening injury that kept him out of action for eight months and has just recovered though he is still struggling to get playing time at the Italian giants.

The call-up will be a major relief for Mariga who is desperately needs to play atleast to boost his chances of  getting a new club when his contract with Inter-Milan expires this summer.

Harambee Stars stand in coach James Nandwa has also called-up former Nairobi City Stars striker David Gateri who plays for ADC Cape Town in Africa and retained most of the players who featured in last month’s regional tournament held in Uganda.

Elsewhere, Kenya has improved seven places in the latest Fifa rankings released this week.

The country is currently placed in position 127 up from position 134 they occupied last month.

Kenya has also improved on their African rankings where they are now placed at position 38 up from 39th last month.

The Latest rise by Stars comes after they were eliminated by Burundi from the Africa Nations Championships (CHAN) qualifiers after going down 1-0.Uganda are still the highest ranked country in the region at position 81 and are the current regional champions.

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