Celtic's Victor Wanyama has joined Southampton, say Kenyans

 

Celtic midfielder Victor Wanyama has been congratulated by the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) for "making history by signing for Southampton".

Neither the Scottish champions nor the Saints have confirmed the completion of a £12m deal for the 22-year-old.

But FKF president Sam Nyamweya has already welcomed the prospect of a Kenyan playing in England's top flight.

"As a federation, we are extremely thrilled with this move by Victor," he said on his organisation's website.

He has always honoured his call-up to the Harambee Stars and every Kenyan should be proud of this move

Sam Nyamweya Football Kenya Federation president

Wanyama has started pre-season training with Celtic ahead of Wednesday's Champions League qualifier against Cliftonville but was missing from the side in Bavaria on Tuesday as Neil Lennon's side suffered a 6-2 defeat by Greuther Furth in a pre-season friendly.

Southampton manager Mauricio Pochettino last week confirmed the club's interest in Wanyama, who has spent two years with Celtic after signing for £900,000 from Beerschot.

Neither club has since been willing to confirm or deny that the player has now agreed personal terms.

But Nyamweya claims the move proves Kenyan footballers can make the breakthrough in one of the world's top leagues.

"It is through his sportsmanship and leadership qualities that led to the federation appointing him as the Stars captain," he said of Wanyama.

"He has always honoured his call-up to the Harambee Stars [Kenya's national team] and every Kenyan should be proud of this move.

"Victor has been a role model to upcoming youngsters in the game and we encourage them to emulate him."