Dennis Oliech had a legendary career that started at Dagoretti Santos in Nairobi and continued at Mathare United before he turned professional in 2003 with a move to Qatari side Al-Arabi. Before hanging up his boots, Oliech—also known as "Dess" or "Kajole”—played for Gor Mahia, Dubai SCS, Nantes, Auxerre, and Ajaccio.
After Ouma Chege, who played in the 1980s and scored 36 goals, he is the country's second-leading scorer all-time with 34 goals for the national team, Harambee Stars. Unbeknownst to others, though, Oliech once had only one hour to decide whether to accept a tempting offer to change his citizenship.
After relocating to Al-Arabi in 2004, Oliech was regarded as one of the most exciting possibilities in the globe.
He was listed alongside Wayne Rooney and Robin Van Persie on a list of the most promising young players published by the UK daily The Guardian when he was nineteen years old.
In June of that same year, Oliech received a Ksh200 million offer to change his nationality from Kenyan to Qatari.
On the eve of the 2004 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Tunisia, he was contacted after scoring a famous injury-time winner against Cape Verde to send Kenya there. But he decided to keep his Kenyan nationality.
As the news spread around Kenya, Oliech's late mother Mary Auma Oliech, well known as Mama Oliech, stood by her son, telling the media that "money is not everything" and that Oliech had his pride.
Despite a few dull periods in his career when he struggled with injuries and goal droughts, Oliech is still among the most prestigious athletes in the nation.
He has won awards, participated in the UEFA Champions League, and scored numerous goals that will live on in the memories of football fans forever.
Also, Michael Olunga of the Harambee Stars was motivated by Oliech to become part of the future generation of Kenyan football legends.
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