Kenyan midfielder happy with return to Finland

Kenyan international midfielder Peter Opiyo

Kenyan international midfielder Peter Opiyo is elated after sealing a return to the Finnish top tier where he signed a one-and-a-half-year deal with Seinäjoen Jalkapallokerho (SJK).

Opiyo, who previously played for FF Jaro from 2014-2016, reunited with his former coach at FF Jaro, Aleksei Yeryomenko, on July 26 when he was unveiled at his new club alongside Shahdon Winchester and Denys Oliynyk.

The 25-year-old has walked straight into Yeryomenko’s first team and played the full 90 minutes in the 1-0 loss to Mariehanm on July 29 as well as the barren draw against VPS at home on August 3.

Speaking to SA24 from his base in Seinajoki, Opiyo could not hide his joy following his return to action after sitting out of action for close to six months due to a nagging knee injury.

“It feels great to be back and I have settled in well because I have worked with the coach before so it’s the same style of play. I am enjoying my football and from the two matches that I have played I think we have the right quality to move higher up the table,” said the soft-spoken midfielder.

Yeryomenko spoke glowingly of the Kenyan international who he described as a “quality feeder” and “calm” midfielder.

“Peter is a midfielder who thinks really fast. He is a real feeder with high quality feed and works very hard. He usually runs the most miles of the team and never gives up. As a character he is also very friendly and very good dresser. He remains calm on the pitch and never panic, so he brings us a lot of confidence in the field,” the Russian tactician told the club’s official website.

It remains to be seen whether Opiyo will rediscover his form at SJK given that he earned his last cap in August 2014 in Kenya’s 1-0 loss to Lesotho in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier.

SJK are currently ranked ninth on the 12 team log with 20 points from 22 matches.