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african qualifying

Kenya head for Nigeria without their coach

June 4, 2009

The Kenya soccer team left for Nigeria on Thursday for a World Cup qualifier without German coach Antoine Hey because of a dispute over his unpaid salary.

Instead, Hey remained in a Nairobi hotel, taking his room phone off the hook and declining to answer his mobile.

Kenyan Sports Minister Helen Sambili hastily called a news conference to say Hey's salary of 5.2 million shillings ($67,000), for three months, had been settled.

"We thought the German Embassy was going to pay Hey's salary until four days ago when we were informed that we would be paying him for this quarter," she said.

Sambili said she hoped Hey, who was appointed in February, would catch up with the team in Abuja on Friday.

Most top Kenyan soccer officials are out of the country, attending a FIFA meeting in the Bahamas.

Kenya face Nigeria on Sunday in Group Two of the African World Cup/African Nations Cup qualifying round.