It is official. Former Sofapaka captain James Situma has signed a lucrative two year contract with the top club in Albania-KF Tirana. The former inspirational captain services will be dearly missed at Sofapaka, a team he captained to top African honors after cruising past respected clubs including Ismailia of Egypt in the Confederations Cup.
Situma’s new deal makes him the first Kenyan to play in the Albanian Superliga. Details of the lucrative contract to which michezoafrika.com had access reveals a great leap in Situma's career as a footballer.Situma who is deadly on free kicks will don the No 14 jersey. The deal was completed on Friday and will make him eligible to play in the Europa League.
He was unveiled officially by the club president Mr. Refik Halili who welcomed Situma to his new club by saying.
“You should feel at home here. We will offer you an apartment for you and your family so you can have your entire mind set for the huge task ahead for you here. You are a great player and we are happy to have you with us.” Said Mr. Halili.
Mr. Halili told michezoafrika.com that they were happy to have James in their team and that the club brought in Bahrain play maker Mahmood Alajmi to bolster the squad ahead of new season
KF Tirana also hired a new coach- Ex Sevilla and former Sevilla/ Barcelona player- Julian Sanchez Rubio who described Situma as a hard working player.
“I have watched him in the past week and he is a great player. He will surely help the team.” Said Sanchez.
An elated Situma could not hide his joy as he held tight to his new Blue and White striped shirt
“I thank God for this chance and I promise to put in my best. Every footballer dreams to play in major leagues and am excited to get a chance to play here as the first Kenyan. It is a privilege and an honor for me and my country.” Situma said during the unveiling.
KF Tirana will face either FK Zeta or FC Spartak Trnava on 14th July in Europa League second qualifying round.
The club is the most successful and most popular club in Albania's soccer history and will be playing in the Europa league with its first match scheduled for July 14th. The club was founded on 1920 and plays its home matches at the Qemal Stafa stadium. They last won the Domestic league in 2008-2009 seasons. They won the Albanian Cup this year (2011).
KF Tirana is ranked behind Portsmouth in the IFFHS Europe club ranking of the last decade at position 171 and last featured in the UEFA Champions League in 2009 and the Europa cup in 2010.
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