Football: Wan Kuzain becomes first player with Malaysian roots to score in MLS

Football: Wan Kuzain becomes first player with Malaysian roots to score in MLS

Wan Kuzain
Wan Kuzain Wan Kamal celebrates after scoring his first goal for Sporting Kansas City in the MLS. (Photo: Facebook/Sporting Kansas City)

KANSAS CITY, Missouri: Footballer Wan Kuzain Wan Kamal wrote his name into the history books after becoming the first player with Malaysian roots to score in Major League Soccer (MLS) on Monday (Jun 5). 

Kuzain, a United States citizen who was born in Illinois to Malaysian immigrants, netted in the 35th minute with a fine left-footed finish from near the penalty spot. His goal gave Sporting Kansas City a 2-1 lead against Minnesota United, and Kansas went on to win 4-1. 

The midfielder told the Kansas City Star after the game that he "just wanted to make an impact positively" after coming on as a replacement for injured teammate Yohan Croizet.  

"Peter (Vermes, Kansas' head coach) has always been saying that I can do this, that I have confidence at this level ... He said once I get it, I'll score and I did. It was nice," said Kuzain. 

The game was Kuzain's second of his MLS career. The 19-year-old made his MLS debut last week against Columbus Crew as a substitute in the 87th minute. 

Kuzain signed for Kansas earlier this year after graduating from the club's academy. He has also trained with the US Under-17 national team in 2013 and 2014, but has yet to make any appearances at the youth international level. 

In an interview with FourFourTwo last year, Kuzain said he loved his nasi lemak, asam laksa and ayam percik just like any other Malaysian. 

He added that while he has not been contacted by the Football Association of Malaysia, he would "surely consider" representing the Harimau Malaya if he got a call-up. 

The teen also met with then sports minister Khairy Jamaluddin at the Bukit Jalil Stadium when he made a trip to Kuala Lumpur in December.​​​​​​​

Source: CNA/ng(rw)