Rwanda and Gor Mahia forward Meddie Kagere was named the Sports Journalists Association of Kenya (SJAK) 2017 Footballer of the Year in a ceremony held at the National Museum of Kenya in Nairobi on Monday night.
Kagere was crowned the Most Valuable Player in the Kenyan league following his heroics this season which saw him contributing 18 goals, scoring 14 goals and assisting four for Gor Mahia in his second return before guiding K’Ogalo to the 2017 league title which earned them a place in next year’s CAF Champions League.
The former Rayon Sports, Atraco, SC Kiyovu and Police Fc forward took over Kenyan Kenneth Muguna who the title last year. Kagere was the first runner up to Michael Olunga in 2015 when the two partnered to deliver the title unbeaten.
On top of the crown, Kagere was also awarded with Sh300,000 (Rwf. 2.4m), a 55-inch television screen courtesy of LG, a return ticket from Skyward Express, a DStv decoder and a gift hamper from Kenya Wine Agency Limited (KWAL).
Speaking to Kenyan media, Kagere said, “Hard work pains but it pays. I thank my teammates who used to make me feel I can do it.
“I am excited and I thank the Gor staff, supporters and above all God,” an elated Kagere, who aided Gor to an unprecedented 16th title, said.
The Golden Glove went to Kariobangi Sharks goal keeper, John Oyemba who managed 16 clean sheets, beating Kakamega Homeboyz custodian David Juma (15) to second place while Posta Rangers’ Patrick Matasi (15) was third.
Masoud won the Golden Boot after notching 17 goals this season, Kagere took the runners-up award after scoring 14 goals while the third position saw another Rwandan Jacques Tuyisenge (Gor Mahia), Kepha Aswani (Nakumatt FC) and Stephen Waruru (Ulinzi Stars) share the accolade after netting 13 goals each.
Full list of winners
Most Valuable Player – Meddie Kagere (Gor Mahia)
Golden Boot – Masud Juma (Kariobangi Sharks)
Goalkeeper of the year – John Oyemba (Kariobangi Sharks)
Defender of the year – Musa Mohammed (Gor Mahia)
Midfielder of the year – George ‘Blackberry’ Odhiambo (Gor Mahia)
New Young Player – Nicholas Kipkirui (Zoo Kericho)
Coach of the year – Sam Ssimbwa (Sofapaka)
SJAK Award – Esse Akida