This is how Aizawl are strengthening their Arsenal in the Pre-Season...

Arka Acharya  |  Transfer Window  |  1 Year Ago

Four months ago, on a dreamy Sunday, a ‘small’ club rose high up and silenced everyone. It was the month of April, when Aizawl FC became the proud winners of the I-League 2016-17 season. A dream come true moment for all of Aizawl when an underdog club surprised the giants to become a Superhero club…



Now that Aizawl has achieved such a feat, the expectations are high. For the upcoming season, the team has been preparing well and well in advance. After losing many players to the likes of East Bengal, Mohun Bagan and the Indian Super League including the talismanic coach Khalid Jamil, Aizawl have reformed themselves with newer-fresher talents blending in with the local faces. The club has appointed the Portuguese  coach Paulo Menezes as their new head coach for the 2017-18 season. Since the beginning of the transfer season, Aizawl has shown a great interest in picking just the right players for the job. Starting this season, they have already signed former Minerva Punjab centre-back Kareem Nurain, David Lalrinmuana from East Bengal, former Pune FC goalie Avilash Paul and many hungry-for-success faces…



Now, as of this week, Aizawl FC has made three international signings and to describe in a word— They’re just amazing. These signings are essentially cherry picking them to enhance their strength to a greater extent. Let’s take a look at what Aizawl has put their hand on:



  1. Leonce Dodoz


The 28-year-old Ivorian striker is familiar with the atmosphere, having played for Mohammedan Sporting in the I-League second division last year. He is currently playing the Calcutta Football League (CFL) for Peerless SC and if among the most talked-about names in the league. Leonce has also had a stint with Chanmari FC as they beat Aizawl 6-2 on aggregate to reach the final of Mizoram Premier League (MPL) in 2016-17 season, which they won eventually. His experience will surely take the club an inch closer to their goal of retaining the cup.




  1. Yugo Kobayashi


The 26-year-old forward from Japan last played for Songkhla United FC in the Thai Division-1 league where he scored 12 times in 33 appearances. The Japanese will be a threat to opponents, thanks to his ability to play physical football and the long-range shots. Kobayashi is an expert at keeping possession and can also play on the wings. 




  1. Masih Saighani


The 31-year old Afghan defender started his career at SG Niederweimar and a familiar face for his national side. He will be playing in India for the first time, after playing for various the lower tiers clubs across Germany. Masih will have that extra challenge being in a whole new environment and he will have to prove that he can be as fearless and exceptional as his new team needs him to be.



As of now, Aizawl is targeting the Mizoram Premier League, which they won twice consecutively in 2014-15 and 2015-16. With only two overseas players allowed in the MPL, skipper Alfred Jaryan and Kareem Nurain will only feature as it stands. The club won a practice match on Saturday against Bethlehem Vengthlang by 3-1, with Kareem Nurain, William Nalnunfela and Remsanga scoring the goals. They are expected to play one more match before they begin the league journey.




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