Sports

Persija Jakarta extend Chand’s Indonesia stay

- PRAJWAL OLI, Kathmandu

Feb 21, 2019-

Indonesia top-tier Persija Jakarta has retained Nepali international midfielder Rohit Chand for one season ending speculations on his future, his agent Ratna Mustika confirmed through her Instagram post.

The 26-year-old Chand, who was rumoured to have been interested in joining Australia’s A-League team, finally extended his contract with the Liga 1 team. He will remain with the club until the end of the year. Posting Chand’s picture at her Instagram Mustika wrote: ‘Himalayan Tiger is back home. In another feed, she posted a photo of Chand and wished for his safe flight.

Chand’s elder brother Rabindra also confirmed that he left for Indonesia on Wednesday and will ink a-year long deal with the Indonesian outfits. “The deal is almost final and he will remain in the club until December. We have already the terms and it will be formalised once he reaches Indonesia and puts ink on paper,” said Rabindra.

It will be his third season in a row with the Indonesian giants, who were crowned the champions of the Liga 1 last season. Chand had played a crucial role in Persija’s run to title and was also named the best player of the league. He also became the first Asian player to win the coveted crown. He had returned home after the end of Liga 1 season in December last year.

Chand’s future with the club was in jeopardy after the team manager Ardhi Tjahjoko announced that he would be joining Australia’s A League side in the next season. Though the club had replaced Chand with midfielder Jahongir Abdumuminov, the Uzbek had failed to meet the expectations of the team. “He later got much improved offer from the club in comparison to last season,” said Rabindra who did not disclose the financial terms of the contract.

Chand, a product of Anfa Academy, had also played for the same club in 2015 after joining the Indonesian top-tier side in 2013. But he was out of action nearly for a year after picking up injury in early 2016 while playing for Malaysian second tier-side T-Team before joining Persija last year. He had a first taste of the Indonesian club football when he joined PSPS Pekanbaru, another top flight team, in June 2012.

Chand had already traded his skills with I-league side Hal Sporting Club for two seasons after joining them in 2010. He is one among two players of the current batch of senior Nepali players to ply trade on foreign soil. Chand marked his debut for the national team at the age of 17 during the 2010 AFC Challenge Cup Qualifiers in Kathmandu. Ever since he has been an integral part of the National team setup. Although he made his name as defender he switched to midfield after joining Hal in 2010.

Published: 21-02-2019 09:46

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