Sierra Leone coach McKinstry calls up Chelsea youngsters

By Mohamed Fajah BarrieBBC Sport, Freetown
Johnny McKinstry
Johnny McKinstry

New Sierra Leone coach Johnny McKinstry has selected two Chelsea youngsters in his squad for two World Cup qualifying matches in June.

Blues reserve Aziz Deen-Conteh, 20, and youth player Samuel Bangura, 18, are among 24 players called up by McKinstry to face Tunisia and Cape Verde.

Deen-Conteh will need clearance from Fifa to play, having already represented England at junior level.

The games will be McKinstry's first in charge of the Leone Stars.

Irishman McKinstry, 27, was a surprise appointment in April, replacing Sweden's Lars Olof Mattsson.

And he has wasted no time in freshening up the squad, following up Mattsson's attempt to include Deen-Conteh for the match against Tunisia in Tunis in March and also bringing in three other new faces.

Deen-Conteh was unable to play against Tunisia after it was discovered that his Sierra Leonean passport had expired, coupled with the fact that Sierra Leone Football Association (SLFA) had not sought seek clearance from Fifa.

Those are issues that need to be addressed this time around and the SLFA will also need Fifa clearance for another potential debutant, Abdulai Bel-Baggie of English League one club Tranmere Rovers.

The 21-year-old, who joined Tranmere seven months ago from Salisbury FC in the fifth tier of English football, has played for both the England Under-16 and under -17 national teams.

The public relations officer of the SLFA, Sorie Ibrahim Sesay, said the body has have contacted World's football governing body seeking clearance for the pair.

"We have already sought clearance from Fifa who has asked us to write the English FA regarding the playing history of the players - we have already done that," Sesay told BBC Sport.

"We are yet to receive a response from the English FA and we have also written a reminder letter to them so that we can speed up the process."

Greece-based John Kamara, 25, is the fourth player to be handed his first call-up. He was initially invited for Leone Stars' last game against Tunisia but was later dropped from the list.

Leone Stars are four points behind group two leaders Tunisia and must win their games in June if they are stand any chance of fighting for the top spot in Group B.

Sierra Leone squad:

Goalkeepers: Christian Caulker (Hammers FC, USA), Ibrahim Tarawallie (Horoya Athletic club, Guinea)

Defenders: Mustapha Dumbuya (Crawley Town, England), Umaru Bangura (Haugesund), Sheriff Suma (Unattached),Abdul Aziz Deen (Chelsea reserve team, England), Samuel Bangura (Chelsea U-18 team, England), David Simbo (Sandviken, Sweden), Gibril Sankoh (Henan Jianye, China), Ibrahim 'Marcel' Koroma (Varbergs BoIS, Sweden)

Midfielders: John Kamara (Apollon Smirnis, Greece), Mohamed Medo Kamara (Bolton Wanderers, England), Alfred Sankoh (Sanliurfaspor, Turkey), Samuel Barlay (Raevan, Azerbaijan), Abdulai Bel-Baggie (Tranmere Rovers, England), Julius Gibrila Woobay (Neftchi FC, Azerbaijan), Ibrahim Kargbo (FK Baku, Azerbaijan), Alhassan 'Crespo' Kamara (Örebro SK, Sweden), George Davies (Right To Dream Academy in Ghana), Khalifa Jabbie (Fredrikstad, Norway)

Strikers: Ibrahim Bangura (Sanliurfaspor, Turkey), Mohamed Bangura (Elfsborg, Sweden), Kei Kamara (Sporting Kansas City, USA) Sulaiman Fullah Sesay (Etar 1924, Bulgaria)

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