Kenyan footballer in Manchester to remember Munich Air Disaster

Tuesday February 6 2018

Kenyan football legend Joe Kadenge at Old

Kenyan football legend Joe Kadenge at Old Trafford, England. PHOTO | COURTESY OF BLACK ARROW 

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Kenyan football legend, Joe Kadenge, will be among hordes of Manchester United fans who will on Tuesday gather at Old Trafford to remember victims of the Munich Air Disaster 60 years ago.

Twenty-three people, including eight Manchester United players, died after European Airways Flight 609 crashed on its third attempt to take off from a runway at Munich-Riem Airport in Germany.

“That accident made me very sad because I support[ed] the club and now my club had lost some players,” recalled 82-year-old Kadenge.

“I prayed for them, I said let Manchester United work hard to look for better players to replace those who have died.”

Kadenge’s visit to Manchester United is part of the recording of his documentary Kadenge na Mpira by the US-based production company Black Arrow.

To mark the Munich disaster, Manchester United will host a special service at Old Trafford Tuesday afternoon. Notable figures from the club's history, including former manager Sir Alex Ferguson, will be in attendance.

Kadenge said he’s enjoying his trip to Manchester because it has fulfilled his life long dream of visiting and watching his favourite club play a football match.

“I love England but to love England I had to love Manchester United very much. They had a beautiful team under Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson. I would have loved to see that old Mzee (old man) just to say jambo (hello) personally to him,” said Kadenge with a wry smile.

Kadenge was known for his trickery and skill on the field of play. Considered one of the greatest Kenyan players, he played for the country's national and premier league teams.