Former West Bromwich and Derby centre-back Curtis Davies is optimistic his twenty-years professional football will help the Sierra Leone national team as he joins new International teammates.
Davies, 38, presently playing for League One side Cheltenham Town, has arrived at Leone Stars camp in Morocco for friendly matches against Benin and Somalia on the 14 and 17, respectively.
Acknowledging he is in the twilight of his career, however, his professional know-how can help nurture his new International teammates.
With over 500 professional matches for clubs like Birmingham, Aston Villa, West Brom, Hull and Derby, Davies told Football Sierra Leone that he banks on his professional ability to guide others.
“I hope my experience can help this time – I think being an older player, having played at the level I have played at, I would like to think the professionalism I bring and the standards I have adhered to in my whole career – will hopefully assist the group, But first, I need to know my teammates, as players, as people and from there – you can help people individually.
“For now, is all about me coming into this camp, getting to know people, the technical team, getting to know the way things are goning to be done so that hopfully, in the next camp for the World Cup qualifiers, I am better prepare Individually and people know me a bit more.”
On Receiving The Call-Up
“When I got the call, it was an initial shock, if I am being honest. Because obviously, at my age, I thought the opportunity to play for Sierra Leone had gone.
It was something that had always been at the back of my head. But, what it is, I never want to be the one to reach out.
It could have been easy to try during the AFCON in Cameroon when there was success. Again, at the time, I did not want to jump at the success of others.
Davies On His Sierra Leone Root
“When I spoke to my dad after receiving the call – in his voice, I knew I had to do it, to come and play for the team – he was so proud.
My dad is the motivational factor in this. Obviously, when I was younger, I represented England at the U21 level. I then was in some four squads as I got older.
I could have played for Ireland – it was never a question of playing for Ireland or Sierra Leone. That is why I never play for Ireland, either.
Is a case of my dad has done everything in my life to give me the best opportunity to be a player, so I think at this stage of my career, to be able to do this is a blessing.
I would like to dedicate my dad – he made this happen for all those years of running around to various football pitches. From County football, District football and them even for Premier League, my dad will go everywhere.”
Between 2006 and 2007, Davies earned three caps for England under-21s before he was drafted in Fabio Capello’s first England squad in January 2008.
On Saturday, Sierra Leone kicks off their 2026 World Cup preparations with a friendly against Benin in Morocco at the Stade Bechir, Casablanca, before taking on Somalia on Tuesday at the Stade Berrechid.
The Leone Stars journey for the FIFA World Cup 2026 in the USA, Mexico and Canada will begin in November 2023 against Ethiopia and African powerhouse Egypt.
The others in Group A are Burkina-Faso Guinea-Bissau and Djibouti in the race to the 2026 World Cup.
@TheCurtisDavies on Sierra Leone, "I hope my experience can help - I think being an older player, having played at the level I have played at, I would like to think the professionalism I bring and the standards I have adhered to in my whole career, will hopefully assist the group pic.twitter.com/BvjIzg4asb— Alie Bittar (@bittar32) October 12, 2023