NEWPORT County AFC winger Keanu Marsh-Brown hopes to bring a touch of the Exiles’ giant-killing experience to the table for Guyana at this summer’s Gold Cup.

Marsh-Brown, whose mother and grandparents hail from the South American nation, helped Guyana to qualify for the tournament for the first time with a win over Belize last weekend.

It was the 26-year-old’s international debut and he set up the winning goal for Emery Welshman to spark wild celebrations in the capital Georgetown.

“To go away with the national team was an honour for me,” said Marsh-Brown, who joined County from Forest Green Rovers last summer.

“The feeling out there was amazing – the training, the bunch of boys we have and the manager – and obviously it ended with a win against Belize, so it was a great feeling.

“In the build-up I was a bit nervous, but I think that’s natural because of the nature of the game.

“There was a lot of pressure on us, but it was an amazing game to play in. All the boys gave it their all, and to get an assist for the winning goal was special for me.

“And it’s huge for the country. You saw that at the game; the whole country was together and everyone enjoyed it.

“The reaction of the fans afterwards was like nothing I’ve ever seen before in football.

“People were crying and we all enjoyed the celebrations after the match.”

South Wales Argus: TEAM SPIRIT: Keanu Marsh-Brown, left, with County teammates Jamille Matt, Padraig Amond and Andrew CroftsTEAM SPIRIT: Keanu Marsh-Brown, left, with County teammates Jamille Matt, Padraig Amond and Andrew Crofts

Marsh-Brown is now back in Newport and ready to play a part in Saturday’s League Two clash at Yeovil Town, one of his former clubs.

But he’s already looking forward to the chance to play in the Gold Cup in the USA and Costa Rica, which starts on June 15.

And County’s FA Cup heroics against Leicester City and Middlesbrough this season will act as an inspiration for Guyana.

“It’s huge for the nation,” said Marsh-Brown. “It’s the first time Guyana has ever qualified for a major tournament in any sport.

“The Gold Cup is a massive tournament. It’s the equivalent to the Euros.

“We’re going over to play in MLS stadiums and against some big teams like USA, Panama, Honduras, Mexico and Canada.

“To be amongst those teams and their players, who play at the top level, will be a great experience and I’ll be looking to make a name for myself on that big international stage.

“It’s similar to here at Newport – we’ll go into the games as underdogs, but we’ve got a lot of quality that teams might not expect and we could shock anyone on the day.”

Marsh-Brown, who was on the books of Arsenal and Fulham as a kid, has previously represented England at youth level but playing for Guyana was a real family affair.

“My mum, my nan and my granddad were all born in Guyana, so it’s always been close to my heart,” he explained.

“And I got to enjoy the game with my older brother [Ronayne] because he played at centre-back as well.

“My mum and my dad and my brothers were over the moon and buzzing to see that. For me and him to play together was amazing.

“That was the first time we’ve played together professionally and hopefully there are many more to come.

“It’s a memory that I’ll never forget in my life and it’s something I’ll tell my kids and grandkids.

“As a youth team player I always wanted to play for England but Guyana was always there asking me to come and have a look at things,” he added.

“I went over there and bonded with the team and I wish I’d done it earlier in my career. It’s an amazing feeling.”

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