Kei Kamara – Colorado Rapids – Celebration
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Kei Kamara: Maybe if I was a US striker, I wouldn't change teams so often

Kei Kamara's nomadic professional soccer career, ranging from city to city, year after year, has taken its latest stop in Colorado with the Rapids.

Surprise, surprise, the league's fifth all-time leading scorer has continued to find the back of the net.

Kamara's heart-shaped-hands goal celebration has followed him, of course. He has 11 goals for the Rapids in 2019, the first time the club has had a double-digit goalscorer since Deshorn Brown in 2014. 

In fact, just a few weeks ago, Kamara became the first player in league history to score double-digit goals in a season for five different clubs. The record is a bit of a conundrum: It shows consistent quality across teams, but also raises a question: Why would a scorer as consistent as Kamara have to move around as much during his career?

“I don’t know, it’s kind of weird. Maybe if I was a US international striker, anytime I score double-digit goals, a team would try to keep me," Kamara told MLSsoccer.com last week. "I’m an easy guy, easy-going. I’ve been traded over the years a few times so maybe teams don’t mind ... A striker that scores goals for the team, you don’t expect him to move."

The Rapids had a putrid start to 2019, going 11 games without a win. That kind of hole is near-impossible to dig out of, though the team has played much better under interim head coach Conor Casey. 

“I can’t really say I’m finding success," Kamara said. "Things haven’t gone our way. Yes I’ve scored my goals, but that’s not me finding success. Finding success is me scoring goals consistently and us consistently winning ... It doesn’t matter where I play, where I go, I want to make sure I’m scoring double-digit goals. It’s how consistent you can be as a player, but you don’t want to keep moving teams.”

Along the way, Kamara has been a bit of a mentor to a number of players. Last season in Vancouver, his relationship with Canadian wunderkind Alphonso Davies was evident for all to see. This year in Colorado, he's adopting a similar role with Jonathan Lewis, among others.

“It's crazy, right? I’m a father, I have my own kids," Kamara said with a laugh.

An important figure in the club's locker room, Kamara has become a vital cog for his team once again. But that hasn't stopped him from being moved in years past, from Columbus to New England, from New England to Vancouver, and now from Vancouver to Colorado.

Maybe the owner of 123 regular-season goals in MLS will now stay put.

“It’d be good," Kamara said of potentially staying with the Rapids. "Like I said, I’m trying to do what I’m supposed to do. It’s not just a job because I enjoy doing it. I don’t know, I would love to stay in Colorado, but it’s not in my control. That’s something we’ll talk about with the club at the end of the season.”


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