Kenya: Junior Starlets on the Brink of History in FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup Qualifiers

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• Mildred Cheche gears up for Burundi return leg

• Convincing first leg advantage

• Coach Cheche explains girls’ quest for World Cup qualification

• Cheche possesses a wide squad depth

• Kenya Junior Starlets’ Next Fixture

• #UgSportsNow

In a momentous occasion for Kenyan football, the Junior Starlets find themselves on the precipice of history as they stand just 90 minutes away from potentially becoming the first Kenyan team to qualify for a FIFA World Cup. The stage is set for an epic showdown as Mildred Cheche’s charges gear up to face Burundi in the return leg of their 2024 FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup Qualifier at Ulinzi Complex Stadium.

Also read: Kenya’s Junior Starlets Cruised Past Burundi in the First Leg

Convincing first leg advantage

Having secured a convincing 3-0 victory in the first leg played at Abebe Bikila Stadium in Ethiopia, the Junior Starlets have firmly placed one foot in the Women’s World Cup in the Dominican Republic. Goals from Lorna Faith, Marion Serenge, and substitute Susan Akoth propelled the team to a comfortable win, setting the tone for what promises to be an eagerly anticipated return leg.

The squad, led by the determined Mildred Cheche, has showcased exceptional skill, teamwork, and resilience throughout the qualifiers, demonstrating their readiness to take on the challenge of a potential historic qualification. The players have shown immense dedication and passion for the game, and their hard work is on the verge of paying off in a remarkable way.

As the team prepares to step onto the field at Ulinzi Complex, the entire nation watches with bated breath, rallying behind the Junior Starlets in their quest for glory. The prospect of witnessing Kenya represented on the world stage is a source of immense pride and inspiration for football enthusiasts across the country.

Coach Cheche explains girls’ quest for World Cup qualification

On arrival from Ethiopia, coach Cheche explained how the girls were psyched to complete the journey. “They know and have been talking of qualifying for the World Cup for the first game, so it is something they are working hard to achieve,” Cheche told reporters.

“We want to make history, we have a 3-0 lead but it is not enough, football can be suicidal at some point, we don’t need to relax on our laurels, the return leg will be a huge game and we want to make sure we treat it as such, what we got away is not in our minds now, all we are focused on is to win the home game.”

Coach Cheche further expressed her gratitude for the government’s support and the comprehensive preparation program in place for the second leg. “With the support we are receiving from the government and the way we have set our preparation program for the second leg, I am confident that we will make history by being the first team to qualify for a FIFA World Cup,” added Cheche.

Meanwhile, her captain Elizabeth Ochaka has called on the fans to come out in large numbers to support the team. “I want to urge the 12th players, our loyal fans, to turn up in large numbers on Sunday and rally behind us as we look to raise our flag high,” said Ochaka.

Cheche possesses a wide squad depth

Cheche has a great squad to pick from her starting XI with goalkeeper Velma Abwire set to keep her role after two superb shows in the game against Burundi and the one against Ethiopia.

In the defence, Chcehe could line up Christine Adhiambo, Kimberly Akinyi, Lorine Ilavonga, and Elizabeth Ochaka while the midfield could revolve around Velma Awuor, Marion Serenge, Halima Imbachi, and Lorna Faith.

Cheche has always kept faith in the striking duo of Rebecca Odato and Quinter Adhiambo and they could start against Burundi.

Also read: FKF Women’s National Super League:Kisumu All Starlets Crowned Champions

With the countdown to kick-off narrowing down to a mere 90 minutes, the Junior Starlets find themselves at a crucial juncture where every moment, every pass, and every goal could script a historic chapter in Kenyan football history. The opportunity to qualify for the FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup carries with it the potential to inspire a new generation of footballers and propel the sport to greater heights in the country.

Kenya Junior Starlets’ Next Fixture

The Junior Starlets have shown that they possess the talent, determination, and spirit needed to clinch victory and secure their place among the elite teams competing on the global stage. As they step onto the field to face Burundi, they carry the hopes and dreams of a nation with them, poised to seize a moment that has the power to resonate for years to come.

As the final whistle approaches, the Junior Starlets stand on the cusp of a historic achievement, ready to etch their names in the annals of Kenyan football lore. The stage is set, the moment is at hand, and the fate of the team hangs in the balance as they strive to make history and realize their World Cup dreams.

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