The former K’Ogalo tactician says he feels the agent of the Kenyan striker should have tried to secure a transfer to Europe
Dylan Kerr has maintained he would have loved to see Harambee Stars striker Michael Olunga return to play in Europe instead of heading to Qatar.
The 26-year-old striker left Kashiwa Reysol of Japan after two seasons in the country to sign for Al Duhail SC of Qatar, and was handed his debut on Tuesday as his team lost 3-1 against Al Sadd.
The British tactician, who handled the player at Gor Mahia and at one time tried to secure him a move to Bolton Wanderers in England, has now said he still believes the striker deserved a return to Europe rather than heading to the Gulf.
- Out-of-contract Aguero facing fight to reclaim starting spot with Man City soaring without him
- Who’s laughing now? Pogba, Solskjaer & Man Utd silence critics to go top of the Premier League
- Kean outscoring Neymar & Mbappe at PSG as he puts Everton humiliation behind him
- Kneeling is a gimmick, slogans do nothing: Football cares more about anti-racism PR than progress
“I’ll always support Michael [Olunga] and I just wish he was given a chance in a bigger league in Europe,” Kerr, who currently handles South African club Baroka FC in the PSL, told Goal on Wednesday.
“I wish his advisor or agent would have tried like I did a few years back to try and get him a team in Europe. His stature, power and finishing instincts as a striker make me believe he could have been an asset to any top club and go even further.”
On whether he has made a mistake to end up in Qatar, Kerr said: “No disrespect to Qatar but as a player, you need to try and play in the best leagues and I believe Olunga could. But, look at it another way, do the best leagues want Michael?
“I always looked at his football and I tried to get him there too but he chose Japan then but Olunga must be happy to move to Qatar.”
After leaving Gor Mahia in 2016, Olunga ventured to Europe where he signed for Swedish top-tier side Djurgardens IF, a club he played for two seasons before signing for Guizhou Hengfeng FC in the Chinese league.
While in China, the towering striker was then loaned out to Girona FC in Spain, a team he featured for 14 matches in La Liga and wrote history by becoming the first African player to score a hat-trick in a span of 22 minutes during a 6-0 win against Las Palma.
On August 10, 2018, Olunga joined Japanese club Kashiwa Reysol and on November 24, 2019, he scored eight goals for Kashiwa in a 13-1 victory over Kyoto Sanga.
Olunga finished the season with 27 league goals as Kashiwa finished the J2 campaign as champions and won promotion to the first division.
On July 26, 2020, Olunga scored a hat-trick for Reysol in the top-flight against Vegalta Sendai; a match that ended in a 5-1 victory.
Olunga finished as the top scorer in the 2020 J1-League with 28 goals, winning the Golden Boot and the 2020 MVP, becoming the first African player to win the J-League MVP award.