Ex-Liverpool FC stars cancel Nairobi visit due to security concern

Source: Xinhua| 2019-02-22 21:50:05|Editor: Shi Yinglun
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NAIROBI, Feb. 22 (Xinhua) -- An entourage of retired stars from English Premier League side, Liverpool FC, cancelled their planned visit to Nairobi that was scheduled for Feb. 23 and Feb. 24 for a football tournament owing to security fears following the terrorist attack on DusitD2 Hotel on Jan. 15, organizers announced on Friday.

The three luminaries, John Barnes, Vladimir Smicer and Sami Hypia would have been in Kenya for the curtain-raiser event for the eighth edition of the annual "Road to Anfield" tournament that is sponsored by Standard Chartered Bank and which will take place on May. 17 in Liverpool.

"The trip was cancelled because of the unfortunate event of Jan. 15 where several people lost their lives," Fred Arocho, event's public liaison officer told Xinhua.

The trio's trip to the East African nation was to act as a morale-booster to the local tournament to be held on March 2 in Nairobi and whose winners will gain direct qualification to the international round in Liverpool.

At stake is a fully-paid up four-day trip to Anfield, the home of Liverpool FC that will also see the victorious local team attend an EPL match as well as benefit from professional training with the club legends and coaches to help prepare for the final tournament.

Kenya is one of the eight participating markets that take part in the five-a-side competition in which the country's representatives in last year's event reached the quarterfinals.