Khano in contract row with RailHawks
Khano Smith is embroiled in a contract dispute with his new team Carolina RailHawks and insists he will not be playing for them this season.
Smith joined RailHawks as a free agent last month but now looks set to leave the North American Soccer League (NASL) team without playing a game for them.
Yesterday Smith told The Royal Gazette his relationship with RailHawks had turned sour because of a contractual disagreement and said he had sought legal advice.
I’m not going to be there basically,” said Smith. “I can’t really say much because it has to go through the legal process. They don’t really want to honour the contract and my lawyer is handling it. Once it’s been sorted I can speak more about what happened. It’s to do with the language of the contract and I’ve been advised not to speak anymore about it.”
The 30-year-old was one of several ex-professionals RailHawks recently signed, including former Newcastle winger Stephen Glass and Kithson Bain, ex-Tranmere Rovers.
Last month Smith said he was looking forward to making a strong impact at his new club. “I just want to do well for the club and myself, it doesn’t matter where I am needed and I’m ready to give my all to the team.
“I think most of the guys are playing at this level because they want to play at a higher level and I just want to get back out there and enjoy my football,” Smith said.
“I was keeping myself in shape waiting for a chance from someone so it feels good to be here. We have a really good team, a lot of players with a lot of experience both from this league, the MLS and overseas. I personally think we have a really good team.”
Smith had been hoping to rejuvenate his career at RailHawks having been without a side since being let go by the New England Revolution last season following an inconsistent campaign with the Major League Soccer (MLS) side. He rejoined the Boston-based outfit at the beginning of last season following a short-term spell at English League Two club Lincoln City where he failed to make an impact.
Prior to that, the Bermuda international played for the New York Red Bulls but had his contract cancelled midway through the 2009 season after falling out of favour with coach Juan Carlos Osario.
The most successful period of Smith’s career came during his first stint at the Revolution between 2005 and 2008 where he reached two successive MLS Cup finals, losing both to Houston Dynamo. He previously played for Dandy Town in Bermuda where he was spotted by Steve Nicol, the Revolution coach, during the MLS team’s pre-season tour of the Island.
The RailHawks, coached by Scotsman Martin Rennie, begin their NASL campaign against Puerto Rico Islanders at Wakefield Soccer Park on Saturday.
Last season saw them lift the NASL Conference Championship to clinch a position in the post-season, finishing fourth overall.
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