Indian football transfers: Minerva Punjab rope in former Bengaluru star Beikhokhei
I-League side Minerva Punjab have announced the signing of Beikhokhei Beingaichho, a 28-year-old winger from Mizoram.
“The wait is over. I’m ready and happy to be joining Minerva Punjab FC. I thank everyone who believed in me and never game up pushing me beyond the line. I thank my agents who always stood by me even when the going wasn’t right. I promise to work hard and achieve everything the comes my way,” said the former Bengaluru man.
Just a few years back, Beikhokhei, who last played for Mohun Bagan, was one of the most prominent figures in Indian football. However, prolonged knee injuries and lack of playing time have slowly pushed the right winger into the oblivion.
Though his former clubs include Bengaluru, East Bengal and United Sikkim, he remained unsold in the 2017-18 ISL Player Draft and subsequently joined Mohun Bagan. Even in Kolkata, it seems nothing went in favour of the swift winger as he was limited to only five matches in the Calcutta Football League last year. He has been without a club since then.
Starting his youth career at IFA Academy in Haldia, Beikhokhei was adjudged IFA U-19 Player of the Year in 2009. After winning the award, he moved to East Bengal and stayed there for four years. In 2013, he joined new-direct entry I-League club Bengaluru FC. He was an integral part of their maiden I-League winning team and flourished through the right flank under Ashley Westwood. Till date, Beikhokhei has two I-League titles and three Federation Cups to his name.
He has a rare distinction of scoring in the AFC Cup for two different teams. He scored for East Bengal on 20 April 2010 against Al-Ittihad. Then again in 2015 he scored for Bengaluru against Myanmarese club Ayeyawady United.
Minerva Punjab have recently signed Brazilian winger Sergio Barboza Jr along with Nigerian striker Orok Orok Essien and with experienced player Beikhokhei now added to their squad, the former I-League champions can hope for a better result in the upcoming season.