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Broke Leopards on verge of pulling out of Confederation Cup

Shame! AFC Leopards are on the verge of pulling out of the Caf Confederation Cup because of lack of funds.

The FA cup holders are expected to travel to Madagascar on Sunday to compete against FOSA Juniors in the return leg of this competition’s preliminary fixture.

This trip might now not happen, a club official who spoke to Nairobi News off the record on Thursday morning explained.

This is because the team has yet to receive financial guarantees from the government for this trip, with some Sh6.2 million required.

Of that, Sh3.2 million will purchase air tickets for the travelling party that includes players, technical bench and officials.

NOTHING IN ITS COFFERS

The balance is meant for accommodation and ground transfer of the team as well as cater for miscellaneous needs.

The hosts have agreed to transport the club from the capital Antananarivo to Mahajanga, which is the venue for the match.

The club, however, currently has nothing in its coffers.

“We are stranded,” the official explained.

“There was an advance party supposed to travel to Madagascar tomorrow (Friday) for bench-marking and strategy. But there is no money. We have been referred to a Mr ‘Komen’ at the Ministry of Sports but he has not been helpful at all.”

TAX RATES

Leopards were banking on the Sports Ministry for support after Deputy President William Ruto and Sports PS Kirimi Kaberia consistently stated that the government would plug the hole left by the abrupt withdrawal of SportPesa earlier in the year.

SportPesa stopped supporting Leopards in protest over increased tax rates slapped on betting and gaming firms by government, which took effect on January 1.

Leopards are also struggling on the pitch having drawn one-all with the Malagasy side in the opening fixture played at the Bukhungu stadium on February 11.

Thus, the Kenyan side require a higher scoring draw or outright win away to secure passage to the next round of this competition.