FIFA World Cup Ex-Gor Mahia coach Dylan Kerr backs Kenya to qualify for World Cup despite setback

Former Gor Mahia coach Dylan Kerr does not see why Kenya’s Harambee Stars cannot qualify for the 2026 FIFA World Cup despite drawing two matches in the just concluded qualifying round.

Harambee Stars returned from Malawi with two points after drawing 1-1 against Burundi in their matchday three fixture on June 7 before registering a 0-0 draw against Ivory Coast three days later in matchday four.

The outcome saw Kenya drop to fourth position on the six-team table with five points, and their qualification hopes suffered a blow after the Swallows registered a 3-0 away win against Seychelles to move above them to third with seven points.

Ivory Coast, who are yet to lose a match, having won three and drawn one are top with 10 points while Gabon are second with nine points.

The results from Malawi left a section of Kenyans admitting their slim hopes of watching the national team play at the global tournament for the first time had gone up in smoke, while others asked the team to focus on other assignments because they had killed their hopes of qualifying.

Kerr, who was a darling of many football-loving Kenyan fans during his coaching time with K’Ogalo, a side he joined in 2017 after leaving Simba SC of Tanzania, is one of those not giving up that Harambee Stars are out of the race.

The 57-year-old Kerr believes with the changing dynamics in world football anything is possible.

“Kenya to qualify for 2026 World Cup? Why not qualify because the dynamics in world football have changed and by that I mean everyone is playing the same brand of football and it’s based on stats not what football is about scoring goals and winning games,” Kerr told

“It is too soon for Kenya to give up; we have seen setbacks and shocking results in recent qualifiers, who knew Sudan would be sitting at the top of a group where we have former African champions Senegal and even Togo? Do you want to tell me this was scripted, no I don’t think so, dynamics have changed, it doesn’t matter whom you are playing, a game can change in seconds, so Kenya must not give up.”

Sudan under head coach Kwesi Appiah remained among the surprise package in the qualifiers so far as they lead Group B with 10 points, two more than the Lions of Teranga, DR Congo are third with seven points, Togo fourth on three, South Sudan fifth on two and Mauritania last with a single point.

To make the group more interesting, Sudan are still unbeaten alongside Senegal in the first four matches, as they have recorded three wins and one draw.

According to Kerr, who won the FKF Premier League title with Gor Mahia in his first season before he completed a trophy treble in 2018, winning the league, Kenyan Super Cup and SportPesa Super Cup, the Harambee Stars group is still wide open and any team including Kenya can spring a surprise to make it to the top.

“And again, the Kenya group is still open, we have only played four matches, and it is a group of six teams, Kenya have five points and table leaders Ivory Coast have 10 but what if Ivory Coast loses their next two matches and Kenya win their two? What will happen, will you not see a change at the top?” asked Kerr, who began his playing career with Sheffield Wednesday before moving to Leeds United in 1989.

Kerr added: “It will be suicidal for Kenya to give up at this stage; they must keep the trust because anything is possible.”

Kerr however, bemoaned Kenya’s failure not to haul at least four points from the two matches but hailed their fighting spirit to restrict the African champions to a vital draw. “A point is always a good result but a point against a so-called bigger team and not getting full points against so-called lesser teams is suicidal,” added Kerr.

“From my understanding yet again although an amazing point against a good team, Kenya should have come away with the three points because they played well, took the game to Ivory Coast, and created many chances but were wasteful in front of the goal.”

Dennis Mabuka

Dennis Mabuka is a seasoned Kenyan journalist with 18 years of experience covering sports events. He is currently a sport content creator with

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *