Striker Kei Kamara announces international retirement

Striker Kei Kamara announces international retirement

The oldest player ever to have represented Sierra Leone at the African Cup of Nations, Kei Kamara, has confirmed his retirement from international football – two days after the Afcon 2023 draw.

In his statement issued on Thursday afternoon, the MLS legend stated, “Today I am finally hanging my international jersey to focus on my club career. Now when those international breaks come, I will spend tie with my family, but I will always miss the games at Siaka Steven Stadium.”

“Fifteen years ago, I decided to wear the green, white and blue and represent you on the international stage. I never knew what the journey would bring me, but I tell you, I would do it all over again if I had the chance.”

“Thank you, Sierra Leone, for letting your son dream – a dream that’s not only mine but also one of many Sierra Leone people home and abroad.

“I’ll continue to serve you in any way that I can. I wish Leone Stars all the best and I cannot wait to celebrate you every step of the way.”

The MLS veteran is the fifth all-time leading scorer in league history with 131 goals (and 47 assists) across 368 regular-season matches. 

Kamara has earned 39 caps for the Leone Stars from 2010 to 22, including the just concluded 2022 Africa Cup of Nations

Presently, he is playing for CF Montréal, his ninth MLS team, having had spells with Columbus CrewSporting Kansas City, Colorado RapidsMinnesota United FC and more.

The former f Norwich City striker made his debut for Sierra Leone in a 2-0 defeat to Equatorial Guinea in Malabo in June 2008.

Connect with us, @football_sierra, on Facebook/ Instagram, Football Sierra Leone, the writer Alie Bittar on Twitter @bittar32, Email: bittar@footballsierraleone.net.

 

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Sierra Leone coach John Keister speaking for the first time after the TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations draw for Côte d’Ivoire 2023, says his Leone Stars side must start with a big ambition.

The Leone Stars of Sierra Leone have been pitted in Group A in the race to the 34th edition of the Africa Cup of Nations, set to be held in Ivory Coast next year.

Coach John Keister’s side will face three-time African champions Nigeria, Guinea Bissau, Sao Tome or Mauritius for a place in Ivory Coast 2023.

“We have to start better with a lot of ambition. Our start in the last qualifiers was poor, a disappointing draw against Lesotho at home and a defeat to Benin away. This time, we must do better the mentality of winning is a top priority,” the Manchester-born told FSL News from South Africa.

After 25 years of absence, the former Sierra Leone International guided the Leone Stars to their third Cup of Nations finals in Cameroon 2021 after a 1-0 triumph over Benin.

Sierra Leone was close to making the last sixteen in Cameroon but fell short by a missed Kei Kamara’s spot-kick against Equatorial Guinea last January at the Limbe Stadium.

“We’re going to respect every opponent, but at the same time, having a mindset to better our previous qualification statistics. It is no secret that every African nation has grown – no more big names in African football. We saw that in the just-concluded Afcon in Cameroon. 

‘We want to qualify again, so we must approach every game with the right attitude to get positive results from the start, but we know it’s never going to be an easy task regardless of who we start against.”

Connect with us, @football_sierra, on Facebook/ Instagram, Football Sierra Leone, the writer Alie Bittar on Twitter @bittar32, Email: bittar@footballsierraleone.net.

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