ISL 2017/18: Bengaluru FC'S Edu Garcia completes transfer to Chinese club Zhejiang Lucheng
What's the story?
On Friday, league leaders Bengaluru FC announced that they have reached an agreement with Chinese League One side Zhejiang Lǜchéng for the transfer of Edu Garcia. The deal, which sees the Spanish winger moving to China for an undisclosed fee, makes Bengaluru FC the first Indian club to earn a fee from a foreign club for the transfer of a player.
“It was an offer that worked well for the club, Edu and Lucheng. It’s also a matter a pride that the deal is a historic one in Indian football and that Bengaluru FC is involved in it. Edu has been fantastic for us in the short time he has spent at the club and we thank him for his contribution while wishing him luck for the future,” club COO Mustafa Ghouse said in an official statement.
In case you didn't know...
Edu Garcia joined Bengaluru FC in September on a one-year deal and had an immediate impact in the Indian Super League (ISL). The 27-year-old scored the Blues' first goal of the season when he found the back of the net against Mumbai City FC. He would go on to score one more goal and rack up as many as five assists. However, rumours of an imminent exit have been doing the rounds since the last few days.
The heart of the matter
Lucheng were keen on signing Edu on a permanent deal for some time and after almost two weeks of negotiations, a deal was finally agreed just five days before the closing of the Chinese transfer window on February 28.
Bengaluru coach Albert Roca admitted that Edu's contributions to the side's surge to the ISL playoffs have been very 'valuable'. However, the opportunity was too good for him to let go off.
“Edu has been a thorough professional during his time at the club and he was presented an opportunity that seemed right to say yes to. His contribution to our season so far has been very valuable and I wish him the best,” Roca said.
Edu will join the Chinese outfit in Spain where they are currently touring as part of their pre-season plans. The Chinese League One season kicks off on 10 March, 2018.
Edu was a vital cog in their setup and there is no doubt that Bengaluru will miss the services of the Spaniard dearly. Going into the playoffs, and with the inaugural Super Cup coming up, it was now that the Blues needed him the most. But then again, an opportunity to play in China does not come every day.