Not following our Tweets?
Shame on you. If you’re not, then you’re not up to speed on the remarkable story of Kei Kamara. In 2011, we shot a short doc about Kei who, as you may remember, rose from refugee to soccer star. We shared Kei’s love of Sierra Leone and our visit to open our school coincided with his return to play in an African Cup of Nations qualifier against Egypt. We thought it would be a great short.
We were wrong.
You see, Kei’s story continues to evolve. And truthfully, even when we first met him, his life and personality was too dynamic to cram into a 25-minute short. So, some time ago, Chad suggested that when we do interviews with soccer analysts here in the States for WE MUST GO, our doc about the Egyptian national team, we ask them a question or two about Kei. You know, “just in case.” So we did.
We heard from Grant Wahl how Kei was among Major League Soccer’s top 5 players in 2012. Then Alexi Lalas told us that he respected Kei’s “punishing style.” Everyone we talked to said that, in the right situation, Kei could play in the English Premier League. That situation is here.
On January 6th, Kei was named the Sierra Leonean Footballer of the Year. On January 30th,he was loaned to the English Premier League’s Norwich City. On February 9th, he made his debut in the 86th minute of a scoreless draw with Fulham (a match which we watched from the back of an RV in Canada while on break from our own games in the World Pond Hockey Tournament–global village indeed!). And on February 23rd, Kei became the first Sierra Leonean to score a goal in the Premier League when he headed home the equalizer against Tim Howard and Everton in the 84th minute. Norwich would go on to claim a dramatic 2-1 victory (and, perhaps less important, become the official Premier League team of Copper Pot).
Since then, Kei has become something of a folk hero. Will it continue? We sure hope so. And, as we have all along, we’re continuing to follow it. To do so, we’re headed to Norwich on March 13th to film with Kei and see Carrow Road for ourselves–not “just in case” something amazing happens, but because it already is.