Indian Football Transfers: Laldanmawia Ralte likely to sign for new Hyderabad-based ISL franchise
After having an excellent I-League with East Bengal in the previous season, Indian footballer Laldanmawia Ralte is likely to play for the new Hyderabad-based franchise in the 2019-20 Indian Super League. The winger did not sign a contract extension with the red and gold brigade, thus ending a two-year stay at the Kolkata giants.
Then Mizo winger was roped in by East Bengal fresh after his heroics in the 2016-17 I-League triumph with Aizawl FC. After his arrival, he was a mainstay in the starting XI for the Kolkata giants. He helped his new employers lift the Calcutta Football League in 2017.
In the previous season, he was one of the top performers in the squad, having played a pivotal role throughout the season. Known for his speedy runs, Laldanmawia was influential in many victories for East Bengal in the 2018-19 I-League. He was also East Bengal's player of the season last year.
Laldanmawia was also the second-highest Indian goal scorer in the 2018-19 I-League, with 8 goals in 19 matches. Some of his notable performances were against Mohun Bagan in the Kolkata Derbies. He scored three times in the two Kolkata derbies in the I-League.
Having impressed in the domestic circuit, he was called up for the national side by then coach Stephen Constantine during the 2018 Intercontinental Cup. He made his debut for the Blue Tigers in that tournament itself. This will be a huge blow to East Bengal, a huge void has to be filled in the absence of Laldanmawia.
The name of the new franchise is yet to be announced, as it is likely to replace FC Pune City in the sixth edition of the Indian Super League. Apart from Laldanmaiwa, Indian forward Robin Singh has also been linked with the new outfit. The 2019-20 ISL will kick-off on October 20, Kerala Blasters FC will host ATK in the opening fixture.