Kenyan footballers are making strides within the industry, establishing themselves as the cream of the crop despite the dire financial situation witnessed within the local leagues.
The spotlight is mainly shone on the men's league whereby the likes of MacDonald Mariga, Victor Wanyama, Dennis Oliech and Michael Olunga are among the elite players that come to mind.
However, in the case of the women, not much is known about the Football Kenya Federation Women’s Premier League and its players.
During the recent past, a section of women sought to change the narrative and shatter the proverbial glass ceiling by breaking into top European leagues. Kenyans.co.ke takes a look at a number of these players:EDF Logrono FC player Cynthia Shilwatso posing for a photo in September 2020.EDF Logrono / Twitter
The 22-year-old embodies the rags to riches tale as she rose from living in a village in the Western region to play in a top Spanish League.
During a past media interview Shilwatso detailed that her journey in sports began after she was scouted by Kenya Women's Premier League side Vihiga Queens to play for their under 20s side.
While at the club, they won four league titles in a row. Further, her performance playing for the Starlets, whereby they clinched the 2019 CECAFA Women’s Championship in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, earned her a deal for a three-year contract with Spanish side Logrono.
The player emulates 27-year-old Barcelona striker and Nigerian captain, Asisat Oshoala.AEL Champions Ruth Ingotsi posing for a photo in February 2020.Goal.com
The 27-year-old defender left her mark after joining Cypriot top tier side AEL Champions from Lacatamia FC, in September 2020.
While signing for the club, Ingotsi was praised for her calmness on the ball and her ability to break and press easily which allows her to play in any defensive position.
During a past interview, Ingotsi noted that the move was a step closer to achieving her dream of playing for the Uefa women's Champions League.Harambee Starlets captain and Atletico Ouriense FC player Corazon Aquino.Goal.com
23 year-old Vivian Corazon Aquino has established herself as a rising star after she signed for Portuguese top tier side Atletico Ouriense in January 2020.
Prior to that, she spent three months in Sweden trying to qualify for top side FC Rosengard to no avail. She, however, came back to the country and had a fruitful run in Harambee Starlet's 2019/20 campaign which saw the team narrowly miss the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
The impressive run saw her noticed by Ouriense management and earned her a spot at the club.Harambee Starlets goalkeeper Annedy Kundu during a past match.Courtesy
The Kenyan international goalkeeper has earned her strides playing for top European leagues. The 24-year-old had joined Cypriot Division One side Lakatamia FC on a three-year deal in January 2020.
While at the club, she played 12 matches and conceded only 16 shots in the 2019/20 campaign before ultimately sealing the move to AEL Champions on a two-year deal in September 2020.
Noting that this is one of the best deals in her career, Kundu noted that she sought to help her team rise to play in the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) Women's Champions League.Kenyan footballer Doreen Nabwire Playing for FC Zwolle (l) and Harambee Starlets.Courtesy
Little is known about Doreen Nabwire despite her historic fete of being the first woman to play professional football in Europe.
The player was discovered by a number of players who urged her to join the Mathare Youth Sports Association (MYSA)- a Norway programme that empowered the young through football.
Years later, she was called for trials and joined the North Villas team under the MYSA brand. This opportunity earned her a chance to meet Wilfried Lemke, an adviser to the President of the German side, Werder Bremmen.
Spotting her talent, the scout assured her that he would facilitate her move and stay to Werder Bremen if she passed the forthcoming trials in Bremen. The past season saw her pass the trials and ultimately score a hat-trick in her first match.
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