May 26, 2013, 6:31 PM EDT
Suggestions that Kei Kamara wasn’t fit enough to start for Sporting Kansas City never really passed the smell test, did they?
After all, how could a man trying to make his way in the venerable English Premiership, especially a man on loan and presumably putting in overtime to prove his worth for a club considering an outright purchase, not be fully fit?
Kamara spent the winter and early spring months at Norwich City and then returned to the Heartland about a month ago, his loan spell up. Sporting Kansas City still owns his contract while Norwich and possibly others consider bringing in the big midfielder for the full English season during the summer transfer period.
Oddly enough, however, he isn’t starting in Kansas City. All four of Kamara’s appearances for Peter Vermes’ club have come off the bench in 2013.
Hmmmm. Could it possibly be that Vermes doesn’t want to disrupt a team that has found a groove lately? Or that he doesn’t want to fully integrate Kamara into his side, only to see the Sierra Leone international hightail it right back to England in July?
Those sound like reasonable explanations. But not fit? C’mon.
Either way, Kamara certainly proved his worth Sunday outside Kansas City, stating his case emphatically for a starting role around Sporting Park.
An SKC side that was on its back foot against Houston for a half (and one that went into the break trailing by a goal on Brad Davis’ smart little flick past Jimmy Nielsen) suddenly owned the game.
Kamara’s early second-half introduction was the master stroke. His power and dash-about desire turned things, and his 68th minute crack from just outside the 18 were an enormous lift as the home team ultimately split the points.
Kamara very nearly provided the game winner in the 76th; it took some very nice work from Houston ‘keeper Tally Hall to push Kamara’s sharp header over goal.
Pending the full highlight pack, here is Kamara’s left-footed equalizer:
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