Forward Kekuta Manneh brings his talents to the Verde via free agency.
After seven years on four different MLS clubs, 26-year old Manneh returns to Austin, the city where it all began for him in the U.S. — when he arrived as a boy from The Gambia.
His blistering speed and adept ball handling quickly made him a stand out as he progressed through the ATX youth soccer ranks at Lake Travis High and LoneStar SC.
Following a brief stint with local USL PDL side Austin Aztex, Vancouver Whitecaps snatched him up on a Generation Adidas contract for his MLS debut in 2013.
During his Whitecaps career, the nimble forward racked up 22 goals in 104 matches.
After fours seasons with the Canadian club, he had stops at Columbus Crew, when Josh Wolff was an assistant, FC Cincy, and New England Revolution, as well as briefly playing in the Mexican and Swiss top leagues.
Reyna respects his ATX roots and MLS soccer resume.
“He is coming home to Austin. He brings with him strong MLS experience, adding depth and knowledge of our League to Austin FC and we look forward to having him join his teammates and coaching staff very soon. ”Claudio Reyna Jan. 22, 2021
What does Austin FC get in Kekuta Manneh
Every MLS club desires a story of the local boy that makes good and plays under the bright lights of his hometown professional club. You can’t help but think part of this signing has a PR angle to it.
But for a brand new club like Austin FC, it is much more than a vanity signing.
Austin FC obviously sees a spark in Manneh. When coached up by Wolff, he can be a significant contributor on-field.
“This city gave me everything when I first arrived in this country and I want to be able to give back.”
— Kekuta Manneh
Kekuta’s return to his adopted hometown should fuel him like never before on the Verde pitch. As a player in his prime, and having seen it all in MLS, the key ingredients are there for success.
His work is cut out for him.
Scanning the current 23-man roster, and taking note of his natural playing position, it seems most likely Manneh will compete with DP signing Cecilio Dominguez at the left wing position.
Real Name: Kekuta Manneh
Birthplace: Bakau, The Gambia
Nationality: United States
Kekuta Manneh Career Stats
|New England Revolution||2020||6||1|
|Columbus Crew SC||2017||24||4|
|Vancouver Whitecaps FC||2013-17||104||22|