When football legend Joe Kadenge walked into the Serena Hotel gardens for a press conference, he stunned many of the sports journalists seated waiting for him.
“Nitaenda kucheza mpira huko juu, mbinguni kuna uwanja mkubwa sana,” Kadenge said, pointing at the sky as he walked towards the designated spot in front of TV cameras.
This admission of his mortality brought tears to some journalists, who did not think it is a funny joke.
This was not the last of his comments about the matter.
During the press conference he said, “I have been sick for a year now. I was telling myself, ‘I’m going. I don’t have days in this world.’ Maybe, I will play more soccer in heaven. I thought I was well on my way to heaven but God has taken care of me. And I’m still here.”
The press conference was to announce that Joe Kadenge will be hosted by Manchester United at Old Trafford for the Manchester United vs Huddersfield match this weekend.
“Manchester United is the football team I support from way back in 1958, when I was playing in Harambee Stars. And now that I have a chance to watch them play at Old Trafford, I just hope I will get the chance to meet the team manager Alex Ferguson and other older players that I used to watch back then.”
Black Arrow cofounder Felix Orwa says, “Joe is arguably the oldest Manchester United fan in Kenya. He became a fan as a show of support for the lives lost in the 1958 Munich Air Disaster; an incident that helped shape Manchester United into the team we know today. We are honoured to represent him and help fulfill his lifelong dream of visiting Old Trafford.”
Joe’s trip to the United Kingdom will begin today. He will visit the Munich Air Disaster memorial tomorrow. Then Joe will join Manchester United supporters at the 60th anniversary ceremony on Tuesday, before being chauffeured back home. Throughout the trip, Joe will be joined by top Kenyan videographer Emmanuel Jambo, who will capture footage of the trip as part the the Black Arrow documentary.”
This will be Joe Kadenge’s first trip to England and to a Manchester United game.