AFC Leopards-an acronym for Abaluhya Football Sports Club-popularly known as Ingwe by its legions of fans, is Kenya most successful football club after Gor Mahia. While the latter continues to thrive, Ingwe fortunes on and off the field are on a free fall. AFC Leopards terrorized opponents in the 90s and produced a number of key players for the national team Harambee Stars. Founded in 1964, AFC Leopards made mince meat of opponents in East and Central Africa winning titles in a row from 1982 to 1984. Their winnings ways were temporary put to a halt until 1998 when they won the Kenya Premier League (KPL).
Titles won by AFC Leopards
The club has amassed 13 KPL titles, 10 Kenya Cup tiles and won CECAFA Club Championship 5 times. The Mashemeji Derby, pitting Gor Mahia and Ingwe, is the most popular derby in Kenya.
In 2006, Ingwe was relegated from the KPL log. They played in the second tier league and won the Nationwide League in 2008. The oldest club in the country made a comeback in KPL in 2009, they went on to win the KFF Cup.
Threatened with relegation
Ingwe is facing the possibility of being relegated from the SPL after a string of poor performances. The club is sitting third from the bottom after amassing only 13 points from 15 games (as of the time of writing this article).
Change of guard
The downward spiral of AFC Leopards prompted a change of guard even before the club elections to be held in June. The ‘Rescue Team’, as the new office has been christened, Maurice Amahwa replaced Dan Mule as chairmain, while Dan Shikanda, Oscar Igaida and Napali assumed the offices of vice chairman, secretary and treasurer respectively.
Salaries and Allowances of AFC Leopards Players
Ingwe players have in the past threatened to boycott games after their salaries were either delayed or not paid at all. This has been identified as one of the issues bedeviling the club leading to poor performances. So how much are these players paid? According to MchezoAfrica, Ingwe players pocket kes6,000 and kes5,000 for winning away and home matches respectively. The then chairman Alex Ole Magelo would top up kes3,000 to up the amount to kes9,000 and kes8,000. Basic salary for the players range from between kes25,000 and kes60,000 per month.