Kei Kamara in Columbus Crew contract dispute


The Striker (pictured) and club believed to be well apart on terms of new deal.

Kamara, who is unavailable to comment, was the joint top MLS goal scorer with Toronto FC’s Sebastian Giovinco with 22 apiece, but the Italian provided more assists that won him Golden Boot award.

The Toronto star earned more than $7 million last season and Kei’s deal worth $536,666.

According to Kamara, 31, is seeking to renegotiate a deal that was worth $536,666 last season, third on the club’s payroll.

His strike partner Argentine attacker Federico Higuain (eight goals, nine assists) received almost $1.2 million and Argentine defender Gaston Sauro collected about $600,000.

The Sierra Leone-born has racked up more than 280 appearances and scored 99 career goals so far, including one of his most memorable against Everton in Norwich City’s 2-1 victory in the English Premier League 2013-14 season was also the league’s 2015 humanitarian of the year.

The former Middlesbrough striker has yet to report to training camp, which opened Saturday in Lakewood Ranch, Fla. Instead, he has remained in Columbus.

Football Sierra Leone understands the 6ft 3 inches striker will be facing disciplinary action and fines if he does not join the team soon. Whether he would participate in workouts during the impasse is unclear.

“Kei Kamara was granted excused time off to be with his family in Ohio after he returned from his visit to his home country of Sierra Leone for the first time in multiple years,” the Crew said in a written statement.

“We look forward to him joining the team on Tuesday to begin preparations for a successful 2016 campaign.”

Before leaving for Florida, Crew Coach Gregg Berhalter told reporters in Columbus last week that Kamara was working on fitness.

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