Mali striker Kanoute linked with Iran club

Mali striker Kanoute linked with Iran club

TEHRAN - Agence France-Presse
Mali striker Kanoute linked with Iran club

Kanoute, a devout Muslim, (R) celebrates a goal with teammate Seydou Keita. REUTERS photo

French-born former Mali striker Fredi Kanoute could prolong his career with Iranian club Mes Kerman, based in the southeastern city of Kerman, it was reported on May 18.

Kanoute brought his career with Sevilla -- whom he joined in 2005 from Tottenham Hotspur -- to an end last week, hinting that he would continue playing outside of Spain.

And a Mes Kerman official told the English-language Tehran Times on Friday: “We’ve held discussions with the 35-year-old striker and reached agreement with him to sign him on a one-year contract.”

Kanoute, who won the UEFA Cup twice, the Spanish Cup twice and both the European and Spanish Super Cups with Sevilla, was named the 2007 African Footballer of the Year, becoming the first player born outside of Africa to win it.

Born in the suburbs of France’s second city Lyon, the devout Muslim represented his country of birth at youth level before switching allegiances to Mali.

Kanoute made his international debut in 2004 and scored 23 goals in 38 appearances before retiring after his team’s first-round elimination at the Africa Cup of Nations in Angola in 2010.