By Isaac Blessings
Football is the most popular sporting activity both in Kenya and the world. Kenya has produced, and continues to birth world-class talents like Victor Wanyama and Michael Olunga, thanks to local football academies in the country. These academies train and coach young players from an early age to prepare them for professional football. Actually it is evident that players who were exposed to football from an early age go on to become the most successful players in the world. If you are looking for an academy to join or to take your child to, then this is your article. Here is a list of some of the top best football academies in Kenya.
Kindly note that this list is not in any particular order.
Express Soccer Academy
Founded in September 2011 by Coach Maurice Mbowo, Express Soccer Academy is one of the best leading soccer academies in Kenya. The school is equipped with the right facilities and led by a group of highly trained and experienced honorary volunteer advisory board members. It boasts of having the best coaches in the country who have undergone training in various football development skills. The academy has two programs – School based and Saturday programs for both boys and girls. The academy offers both introductory and competitive soccer programs to school children in a fun and safe soccer environment. Express Soccer Academy mainly targets children between the ages of three and fifteen.
To be a leader in soccer development through searching, identifying, nurturing and developing soccer talents among children and giving them opportunities to prosper through professional coaching.
We are committed to providing quality coaching and support that promotes teamwork-based player self-esteem and encourages skill development.
Their offices are located at Apostle of Jesus Youth training Institute office block, Seminary Drive, Karen.
Hillcrest International School, Prep-school section, Hillcrest road off Langata Road, Karen.
Marist International University, Marist Lane, Off Langata Road, Karen.
Call 0740072901 or 0720094049
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JMJ Soccer Academy
JMJ Soccer Academy is arguably Kenya’s best football academy. It has managed to place three players in top clubs in Europe. The three include Harambee stars former captain and midfielder Victor Wanyama who once played for Tottenham hotspur and now plays for CF Montreal, Ayub Timbe who currently plays as a forward for Beijing Renhe in the China League One and Johanna Omolo who plays for Royal Antwerp in the Belgian League. JMJ has a brilliant training atmosphere that will help nurture a child’s talent and make them the star they were meant to be.
Children aged 5-7 years both boys and girls attend the training lessons on Thursdays and Tuesdays. They go for practice for one hour every Saturday from 3.30 pm.
Young boys and girls aged 8-13 years go for lessons on Mondays and Wednesdays and practice games on Saturdays from 3.30pm.
For aspiring teenage footballers aged 14-18 go for practice and coaching for two hours on Mondays and Wednesdays from 4.00pm while practice matches take place on weekends.
JMJ Soccer Academy is located in Nairobi West, Nairobi County.
Ligi Ndogo Academy
Ligi Ndogo Academy was founded in 2002 with the aim of creating an enabling environment for young people to nurture their soccer talent outside a normal learning curriculum. It is designed as a soccer league with regular matches and training sessions that build a closer understanding between the instructor and the child resulting in the child learning more practical skills. The academy caters for youths across various youth age groups having different teams in each category at the various centers. Here, children are taught various aspects such as leadership, team spirit, discipline and responsibility hence resulting to a well-equipped player. Harambee stars player Ayub Masika is an alumni of the academy.
Currently, Ligi Ndogo has four centers namely;
The main center is located on the Ligi Ndogo grounds along Ngong Road next to the RUFUEA Rugby grounds.
South B center – located at the Railway Training Institute grounds near Hazina Estate.
Gigiri center – located at German School Gigiri, opposite Village Market.
Karen – located at the Nairobi Academy Karen.
NB: Enrollment to any of the centers is done at the main offices at Ligi Ndogo Grounds, Ngong Road.
Call 0721944821 for any enquiries.
Junior Stars Football Academy
Established in 2008, Junior Stars Football Academy is one of the best football academies in the country. The academy is powered by the Junior Stars Youth Development Program – a community based organization based in the coast region of Kenya. Their main goal is promoting smart, strong, self-confident and empowered youths with football as their vehicle of change. At Junior Sports Academy football talent is creatively and sharply nurtured by well-trained coaches who also organize friendly matches and tournaments with other clubs to expose their players to new sets of skills. At the same time, young children receive guidance and counselling on societal issues such as drugs and premature s*x.
The Academy is located in Bamburi, Mombasa – Tausi Plaza opposite JCC Junction, Lai Stage.
Sadili Oval Sports Academy
Sadili is a social enterprise that uses sports and education to empower children and youth to improve their lives for a better future. The academy has been able to provide life skills training, mentoring and coaching to more than 7,000 children in Kenya. The academy is an award winning facility with international recognitions such as; Winner of the “Spirit Of The Land” Award in 2003 from the International Olympic Committee at Salt Lake City Olympics for our Sports For Life Program GFOrSE Award in Japan in 2003, PTR Humanitarian of the Year Award in USA in 2004. It was also nominated as the Model Centre for Excellence for Africa by UNEP and Global Sports Alliance in August 2001.
If you are a parent and you want to take your child to an academy that will nurture both the child’s talent and physical development, then Sadili Oval might be your best candidate.
It is located along Kitengela road, Nairobi.
Call 011543217 for any inquiries.
Uweza Soccer Academy
The Uweza Soccer Academy offers young boys and girls drawn from the slums of Kibera an opportunity to participate in coaching training sessions and well-structured matches and tournaments. The current Uweza teams include under 8, under 10, under 12, under 14 and under 16 for boys. For girls, the options available are under 12 and under 16. The academy is run by The Uweza Foundation – a community based organization that seeks to give a platform to the less fortunate yet talented slum players an opportunity to sharpen their skills in a more structured setting. Both the Uweza Men and Women FC senior teams participate in the Football of Kenya Federation’s Nairobi County League.
It is located along Karanja Road in Kibera Nairobi.
Call 0720384393 for any queries.
Friendship International Sports Academy (FISA) is an organization that was founded in 2006 by Dr. Maurice Awang Owuor and Mr. Amit Shah who are its directors. The academy draws talented children from neighboring hoods such as Mukuru Slums, South B and Makadara. It has three coaches – Wedson Waweru, Charles Hammington and Mickey, who are highly trained with over 10 years of expertise in the coaching field. Players enrolled at the facility benefit not only from football training but also crucial life skills which help them avoid peer pressure that is rampant in the hoods. The academy has over 100 players playing in different categories including Under 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18 and under 23.
Training sessions occur on weekdays from 4.00pm to 6.00pm and from 2.00pm to 5.00pm on Saturdays and Sundays.
Achievements Of FISA Academy
In 2011, FISA represented Makadara constituency in the quarter finals of the Safaricom Sakata Ball tournament held at City Stadium.
Twice Semi Finalists in the Under 20 East and Central Africa Football Championship held in Arusha Tanzania in 2008 and 2009.
In 2009, FISA were the Silver medalists in Zone B Football Kenya League Super League.
In 2008, FISA Academy won the Impala Football Tournament in under 10 and 12.
It is located in South B at the training grounds of the Kenya Police Band
Call 0745623409 for any queries.
KYSA international Soccer Academy
The KYSA international Soccer Academy is a program that aims at empowering young people through sports to enable them fulfill their true potential and improve their true potential and improve their lives through training and development. It uses soccer as an outlet to equip the young children with necessary skills and keep them out of trouble. The academy has different categories including junior academy (between ages 4 to 16), senior academy (between ages 16 to 20) and advanced players who are 20 years and above.
It is located just 20 miles from Nairobi City Center, opposite USIU University and Safari Park hotel and Casino.
Call 0722326599 or 0796212093
Hearts Of Ruiru Sports Centre
H.O.R.S.C was established in 2012 by Mary Mbeki. It started as a small soccer team of under 13 years boys and has grown to become a fully functional sports academy. The under 13 team which is the most famous and vibrant of all participates in the Federation of Kenya Football (FKF) under 13 league. The Under 17 team plays in the Ruiru Sub-county league. Its main aim is to bring up a generation of professional players who are disciplined and hardworking under Christian values.
Developing good character of children through whole life coaching as we address social issues like drug and substance abuse and juvenile delinquency.
It is located at the heart of Ruiru town, Kiambu County.
Call 0713024618 or 0755825441 for any queries.
Liberty Sports Academy
Established in 2008 by Accra-based businessman the late Alhaji Sly Tetteh and former Harambee stars coach Jacob Ghost Mulee, Liberty Sports Academy is arguably Kenya’s best football academy. The club started their first season in the Nairobi County League in 2011 and the Nairobi Provincial League in 2012, winning both leagues unbeaten. Liberty was promoted to the National Division 2 in 2015 and National Division 1 in 2017 as they were crowned overall champions. Kenya’s captain and Al-Duhail striker Michael Olunga is an alumni of the academy.
Their home stadium is Camp Toyoyo located in Jericho, Nairobi. The stadium can carry up to 1,500 people.
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