After gaining promotion to the Kenyan Premier League (KPL), Shabana FC could be playing in an ultra modern facility next season as the Gusii Stadium, their home ground is currently undergoing renovations.
Kisii Governor James Ongwae has set a side Sh46 million to give the facility a new face after years of neglect.
The contractor Steve Nyagaka confirmed yesterday that the stadium will be ready for Shabana to use when the 2015 KPL season beings in February.
“We are working in phases and currently, the perimeter fence is almost done. Our next step is the sitting pavilion, laying of the tartan track and the playing surface. All this will be done by the time the league starts. We are building more amenities like a basketball court and an indoor game court. All this will be done in six months,” said Nyagaka.
Shabana chairman Jared Nivaton said they will meet with the governor next week to map out a partnership deal that will see the team stay in the top flight.
“We will also be discussing the renovation of the stadium which we hope will be ready in time because we want to give the people of Kisii what they have been missing for long,” said Nivaton.
The club is also searching for a new coach and Naviton says two experienced tacticians have been shortlisted.
“We have narrowed down to two coaches who will not find it hard settling a team into the premier league. From there, we will look at strengthening the team, the core being those with prior experience in the top flight,” added Nivaton.
“Our target is to remain in the league and maybe a top eight finish. We don’t want to be so ambitious by talking up a title challenge. Next year will be a season to settle and gain experience. We will adjust our targets as we grow in stature,” he said.
The club is also setting up a professional secretariat that will work on getting a shirt sponsor. “We have already hired a professional marketer to help us in sourcing for sponsorship and also plan to have a secretariat in Nairobi and Kisii. This is to ensure the club is run professionally and be a model to other KPL teams,” said Nivaton.