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CF Montreal ships Kamara to Fire

Kei Kamara Kei Kamara - The Canadian Press

CF Montreal has traded veteran striker Kei Kamara to the Chicago Fire, the team announced Friday.

In return, CFM receives up to $400,000 in Targeted Allocation Money.

Kamara, 38, appeared in 39 games across all competitions in 2022, scoring nine times.

Club vice-president Olivier Renard says they had hoped to keep the former Sierra Leone international around.

“The club thanks Kei for his on-field contributions last season,” Renard said in a statement. “The club's wish was not only to have him for the 2023 season, but to offer him a multi-year project. We wanted him to be happy and to settle in Montreal with his family. We ultimately found an agreement for a trade. We wish him the best of luck in the next chapter of his career.”

Kamara had publicly asked for a trade through social media in January, but he said he remained committed to the club when he met the media earlier this month.

"I’m here, I’m under contract, I will continue to honor my contract," Kamara said. "I love the city, man. If I went into the front office and asked them: I would love to retire a CF Montréal player, then that means I want to be here. But at the same time, I cannot force something that's not going to happen for me and my family."

An MLS All-Star in 2015, Kamara has made 391 MLS appearances over 15 seasons with Montreal, Minnesota United, Colorado Rapids, Vancouver Whitecaps, New England Revolution, Columbus Crew, Sporting Kansas City, Houston Dynamo and San Jose Earthquakes.

His 139 goals are third-most in MLS history.