McDonald Mariga Wanyama is one of the most talented footballers Kenya has ever produced.
He put our nation on the world’s map back in the day when he was an active footballer.
Mariga flew the Kenyan flag high and he is the first Kenyan to have won the coveted Uefa Champions League trophy in 2010 with Inter Milan.
‘Mariga is a cool person and I’m fond of him,’ Joey Muthengi opens about her relationship with footballer
Well, Mariga is contesting for the Kibra parliamentary seat after the death of Ken Okoth and he is the Jubilee candidate vying for the seat.
He scored the highest marks during the Jubilee nomination interview.
He recently addressed claims that he was DP Ruto’s project.
I am not a project of anyone and I will support whoever wins since I was born and raised in Kibra.
The footballer-cum-businessman is a very private person and below are things you didn’t know about him.
- He was born on April 4, 1987. He is 32 years old.
2. He is the firstborn child of sports fanatic Noah Wanyama
3. He is the eldest brother to Harambee Stars captain and Tottenham Hotspur player Victor Wanyama
4. He was born in a family of sportsmen – His two sisters play netball and basketball and his other two brothers Victor and Thomas are footballers. His parents were also active sportspeople.
5. Lived in Muthurwa ‘slums’ with his family
6. He attended the famous Kamunji High School alongside top Kenyan footballers among them Dennis Oliech The Menace.
7. He played for Ulinzi FC, Tusker and Kenya Pipeline back in the day before he moved to Europe.
8. Played in the midfield position (Central and defensive)
9. He first ever Kenyan to ply his trade in the Italian Serie A and Spanish La Liga.
10. In 2005 he moved to Sweden, where he played for Enköpings SK for a season. He then moved to Helsingborgs
In 2007, he moved to the Serie A – Parma, where he played until 2010.
In February 2010 he joined Inter Millan and played alongside football’s big names among them Cameroonian star Samuel Eto’o and Ghanaian Sulley Muntari. He played for the club until 2014 and rejoined Parma.
In 2016 -2017 he played for Latina and in 2017 -2018 he featured for Real Oviedo.
11. In September 2019, Mariga officially announced his retirement from active football to concentrate on politics. before hanging the boots.
I have retired from football and have decided to go and give back to the community,’ he said.
12. He is the brand ambassador of leading betting firm, Betin
13. He is a father of one
14. He is a politician
15. He’s contesting for the Kibra parliamentary seat
16. Filthy rich
Mariga earned quite a lot of money and this can be evident from his flashy lifestyle. The Kibra aspirant lives in Lavington, one of Nairobi’s expensive suburbs, he has a taste for finer things in life including clothes, cars, watches just to mention but a few.
When he moved to Inter Millan in a co-ownership deal. The transfer fee was €5 million (Sh572,929,606) in a cash plus player deal which Parma got half the registration rights of Jonathan Biabiany (€2.5 million) and the loan of Luis Antonio Jiménez.
Mariga was among the first Kenyans to own a hummer. His red Hummer has a customized number plate inscribed MARIGA 17.
He also owns a customized Toyota Land Cruiser.