Off-the-Pitch

Most expensive Kenyan footballer can fetch 830 million…the lowest Sh23 million

Arnold Origi, the only goalkeeper to make the list, was once valued at Sh68 millionwhen he was younger

Man-on: Ayub Timbe during the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations against Algeria in Egypt. The midfielder was on loan to English Premier League side Reading FC bur left for his Chinese club Beinjing Renhe this July.

By Idris ‘Shoes’ Lule

Contributing editor/sports

There are less than 40 Kenyan professional soccer players plying their trade outside the country. From Albania to Algeria, England to Egypt, Georgia to Greece, Sweden to Spain. It is one of the highest numbers of pro players if you include the six playing for Zesco United and Nkana Red Devils in the Zambian league.  Most have swapped clubs and so have their fortunes changed. Their current market value according to the 2020 Transfer Market, which measures soccer players from the time their club movement became public, also changes with age. Arnold Origi, the only goalkeeper to make the list of players worth millions, was once valued at Sh68 million, but at 36 years, his value plummeted to the current Sh25 million.  

Masoud Juma, Eric Ouma and Amos Nondi Obiero are all valued at Sh17 million each and did not make it on the list of the top most valued players.

  1. Victor Wanyama
Backpass: Victor Wanyama’s value has depreciated since leaving the English Premier League.

Current market value: Sh830 million

Age 29 (?)

Current club: Montreal Impact, Canada

Position: Defensive midfielder

Years active: 2006-2020

Highest market value: Sh3.8 billion

2. Michael Olunga

Engineer: Michael Olunga helped Japanese side Kashiwa Reysol FC win the league with the most individual goals. Many fans think Japan is a small pond for his lake size talent.

Current market value: Sh128 million

Age 26

Current club:  Kashiwa Reysol, Japan

Position: Left-footed centre forward

Years active: 2014 -2019

Highest market value: Sh153 million

3. Ayub Timbe

Dummy run: Ayub Timbe playing for Reading FC. He holds Kenyan and Belgian citizenships.

Current market value: Sh66 million

Age 27

Current club: Beijing Renhe, China

Position: Winger

Years active: 2004 -2020

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Highest market value: Sh127 million

4. Abud Omar

Clearing and forwarding: Abud Omar during the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations match against Tanzania.

Current market value: Sh55 million

Age 27

Current club:  Clubless

Position: Left back

Years active: 2013 -2019

Highest market value: Sh64 million

5. Johanna Omolo

Through pass: Johanna Omollo won the 2019 FIFPRO Merit Award for community work in Dandora estate. He also proposed to his girlfriend Gladys Mumbi in Paris, France.

Current market value: Sh52 million

Age 31

Current club:  Cercle Brugge, Belgium

Position: Defensive midfielder

Years active: 2007 -2020

Highest market value: Sh83 million

6. Handwalla Bwana

Showboat: Handwalla Bwana is the youngest of the most expensive players but Football Kenya Federation is yet to take notice.

Current market value: Sh45 million

Age 23

Current club:  Tacoma Defiance, USA

Position: Left winger  

Years active: 2015 -2020

Highest market value: Sh57 million

7. Patrick Osiako

Target man: Patrick Osiako has had mixed fortunes abroad which includes one sacking and then a call up.

Current market value: Sh45 million

Age 33

Current club:  FC Linkoping, Sweden

Position: Central midfielder  

Years active: 2007 -2020

Highest market value: Sh100 million

8. Eric Johanna

Box-to-Box: Eric Johanna has not added or lost his value. He is the tallest Harambee Star players.

Current market value: Sh26 million

Age 26

Current club: Jonkopings, Sweden

Position: Right winger

Years active: 2014 -2020

Highest market value: Sh26 million

9. Lawrence Olum

My ball: He founded the Lawrence Olum Foundation in Nairobi to nurture sports talent through education in 2017.

Current market value: Sh25 million

Age 36

Current club: Minnesota United, USA

Position: Centre back

Years active: 2007 -2020

Highest market value: Sh44 million

10. Arnold Origi

Far post: Arnold Origi has lost half his value over time. He was recently recalled to Harambee Stars after five years in the cold.

Current market value: Sh23 million

Age 36

Current club:  Helsinki IFK, Norway (free transfer)

Position: Goalkeeper  

Years active: 2006 -2020

Highest market value: Sh76 million

Source: Transfermarkt.com

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