Sierra Leone banks on new faces to propel football team forward

Sierra Leone players pose for photographers ahead of their African Cup of Nations 2022 group E soccer match between Algeria and Sierra Leone at the Japoma Stadium in Doula, Cameroon, Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022. (Sunday Alamba)
FILE PHOTO: Sierra Leone players pose for a photograph ahead of their African Cup of Nations 2022 group E soccer match between Algeria and Sierra Leone at the Japoma Stadium in Doula, Cameroon, Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022. (Photo by Sunday Alamba via CFP)

Sierra Leone’s national football team coach John Keister is banking on new faces to take the country forward following their outing at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).

In a bid to further strengthen the team, Keister has called up ten new players for the upcoming friendlies against Togo, Liberia and Congo.

The Leone Stars failed to qualify from Group E, but a 0-0 draw with defending Champions Algeria and another 2-2 draw with Cote d’Ivoire earned them praise.

The side finished in third place, leaving Algeria in last place.

Upon their exit from the tournament, Keister expressed satisfaction with his charges’ efforts, noting that they had made the country proud.

“There has been a massive amount of happiness in Sierra Leone around what this national team has done,” he said at the time.

“It has brought the country together. You see everyone in Sierra Leone wearing the green, white and blue.”

Some of the new players coming into the Sierra Leone team include Alex Bangura of SC Cambuur and Bolton player Amadou Bakayoko.

Experienced players like goalkeeper Mohamed Kamara, defender Steven Caulker and striker Mustapha Bundu made the team following their contributions at AFCON 2021.

 

Squad

Goalkeepers: Mohamed Kamara, Unisa Conteh, Ibrahim Sesay

Defenders: Osman Kakay, Kevin Wright, Steven Caulker, Yeami Dunia, David J. Sesay, Lamin Conteh

Midfielders: Issa Kallon, Kamil A. Conteh, Ibrahim Sillah, Jonathan S. Morsay, Cesay Wiston, Demba Kamara, Alusine Koroma, Saidu B. Kamara, Samuel K. Bekoe, Cesay Kallum

Attackers: Augustus Kargbo, Mustapha Bundu, Amadu Bakayoko, Alex Bangura, Emmanuel S. Samadia, Alie Conteh