SBI MLS Rookie of the Week: Kekuta Manneh

KekutaManneh1 (VancouverWhitecaps)

By DAN KARELL

Vancouver Whitecaps manager Martin Rennie brought on Kekuta Manneh in the 54th minute of Saturday’s match against FC Dallas down two goals, in desperate need of a spark.

Manneh provided just that, scoring once and assisting on a second as the Whitecaps tied FC Dallas 2-2. The Gambian’s performance in just 36 minutes of action has earned him the honor of SBI MLS Rookie of the Week.

The 18-year-old’s first professional goal came in the 72nd minute, when he pounced on a rebound off a shot by his teammate Camilo and sent a right footed blast into the net. FC Dallas struggled to keep up with the control and pace of Manneh after his inclusion in the game.

Honorable mention for this week’s award go to Los Angeles Galaxy forward Charlie Rugg, and Colorado Rapids midfielder Dillon Powers.

What did you think of Manneh’s performance vs. FC Dallas? What rookie impressed you in MLS this past weekend?

Share your thoughts below.

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10 Responses to SBI MLS Rookie of the Week: Kekuta Manneh

  1. MMV says:

    Kekuta Manneh has had a wild, crazy ride from Gambia to Texas and ultimately MLS / Vancouver. The kid is oozing with talent. I’ve heard / read the hype and this was my first full viewing of Menneh. He was as good as advertised. I wish there was a chance, right now, he could suit up for the US Baby Nats. He would be a HUGE assest. I don’t know his residency stauts, especially now living in Canada, but this kid is someone to watch.

  2. Nathan says:

    After watching him live at the Carolina Challenge Cup in Charleston:
    “Nathan says:
    February 16, 2013 at 11:19 PM
    Kekuta Manneh. Remember the name.”

    • Darwin says:

      SBI egos…

      • Nathan says:

        No ego here, Im posting on a soccer website on first name basis for goodness sakes, but I appreciate the condescension. Just happened to be really impressed with his performance in a preseason tourney, and then remembered posting about him. It’s pretty natural/logical really. If calling people out over posting is something you’d like to spend your life doing, well, to each his own I guess.

  3. sushant says:

    2 questions:
    - What’s his backstory? (why did he come to the US, etc)
    - Why is he getting the call and not Omar Salgado (#1 pick in 2011)?

    Anyone know?

    • Soro says:

      Salgado is perpetually injured, although he is supposed to make his first appearance of the season tomorrow evening in the Canadian Championship (Cdn version of the US Open Cup). Hopefully we will see him soon, as a combo of Salgado and Mattocks up top would be interesting to see.

    • Nick Barbaro says:

      He was brought to the U.S. as part of The Rush Academy’s youth development program over there. Went to high school in Austin, TX, and spent last year with the PDL Austin Aztex, as did honorable mention rookie of the week Dillon Powers, and the Impact’s Blake Smith. Go Aztex!

  4. Adrian says:

    Hunger. . Passion Manneh … Galaxy fan saying ball young man ball.

  5. td says:

    I was at the game and thought Heineman was the true catalyst. Manneh was also a catalyst, but Heineman was the the one who battled for balls and forced turnovers, ran at players, and put balls into attacking positions for other players. The combo of Heineman and Manneh changed the game no doubt. The other thing to remember is that Dallas lost two of their three central players to injury and then took a red card. So they came on with more space than the starters and did not face the top central D pairing.

  6. graeme says:

    Jonathan Osorio’s strike for TFC should of earned him a mention with these others. 2nd goal of the season for a youngster who came through the Academy.