Two Sierra Leonese players may be about to add to the African contingent in Major League Soccer. Both are currently on trial at San Jose Earthquakes.
Abu Tommy, a box-to-box midfielder, had been playing for Sheriff in Moldova’s Divizia Nationala.
He is being joined by Lamin Suma, the former Sierra Leone Under 21 captain.
Suma was with Jedinstvo in Montenegro, both players set out on their journey after representing a club called Mighty Blackpool in their home country.
The club based in the capital Freetown changed their name to Mighty Blackpool in 1954 to reflect admiration for Sir Stanley Matthews.
The two grew up together in relative poverty.
They had heard of course of fellow countryman Kei Kamara who told talked favourably of MLS to them.
Suma is only 21 and is a winger or attacking central midfielder according to internet sources. Tommy is two years older. San Jose Earthquakes staff are said to be already very impressed with the latter and have compared his style to Ricardo Clark of Houston.
The two youngsters are said to have emerged from an impoverished background and been spotted by Gwyn Williams who is the Technical Director of Leeds United. Williams is most famous for discovering John Terry when he had the same job at Chelsea.
Through a series of conversations, San Jose Head Coach Frank Yallop and his team became aware of their promise and demanded to see the videos. They were sufficiently impressed to bring the duo over.
They would use two international slots.