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Cleveland adds Sierra Leone duo

Cleveland City Stars News Release - www.clevelandcitystars.com

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

CLEVELAND, OH -- The Cleveland City Stars have announced the signing of two promising Sierra Leone National Team members in midfielder Warren Kanu and forward Teteh Bangura.

Kanu was a regular in Sierra Leone's World Cup qualifying effortsWarren Kanu enters his first season with the Stars in 2009 after playing professionally with Bostangi Bagil FC in Northern Cyprus where he was voted midfielder of the year in 2006-07. The 26-year old started his career with Mighty Blackpool in Sierra Leone before moving to Northern Cyprus with K. Kaymakli TSK.

Kanu was called up to the Sierra Leone National Team in 2008 and totaled 574 minutes in seven 2010 World Cup Qualifiers for the Leone Stars including 90 minutes in a victory over South Africa. Unfortunately, they were unable to secure one of the wild card berths to the next round having finished in a tie for second with South Africa behind the dominating Nigerian side in the Second Round group stage. Sierra Leone, however, is at its highest FIFA ranking in nearly 10 years at 109th.

"Warren has had success as a professional and he's played a big role with the National Team," said Cleveland City Stars Head Coach Rod Underwood. "He's a player with good vision that can make positive things happen in the middle-third and we're excited to bring him to the U.S."

Teteh Bangura enters his first season with the Stars in 2009 after playing professionally with FC Kallon in Sierra Leone.

The 19-year old forward was the leading goal scorer in both the Sierra Leone Premier League and the Sierra Leone FA Cup for the 2006-07 season. Bangura has been on trial with AC Milan and BK Hacken and was called up to the Sierra Leone National Team for a friendly with England on May 7, 2007 and also for a World Cup qualifier with Equatorial Guinea on September 6, 2008.

"Teteh is a young player that has already been capped with the National Team and I think that says a lot about his game," said Underwood. "This will be his rookie season here in the United States and we're quite excited to see what he can bring to the Cleveland City Stars."

This is the second straight season that Cleveland has tapped into Sierra Leone as Freetown native Sallieu Bundu led the City Stars in goals and points scored in 2008. Both Kanu and Bangura played with Bundu as members of the Sierra Leone National Team this past summer.

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