Emerging Indian talent Lallianzuala Chhangte has been roped in by two-time ISL champions Chennaiyin FC after the 22-year-old winger was turned down by Vikings FK last week. The Marina Machans finished at the bottom of the table last time and parted ways with Raphael Augusto this summer.
Chhangte has been a highly-anticipated talent since breaking onto the domestic circuit with Delhi Dynamos last season. And now, with the capital city shifting base to Odisha, Chhangte has decided to start a new challenge under title-winning coach John Gregory. The reported long-term contract with the club came after Chhangte was denied a contract with top-flight Norwegian club Viking FK despite impressing them in the trial. However, the Mizoram winger has stated that he was delighted to join Chennaiyin FC.
"Chennaiyin FC are one of the biggest clubs in India with a rich history in the Indian Super League. I am elated to join them as they celebrate the completion of five glorious years. It is my ambition to add to their success and achieve a lot in the seasons to come," he was quoted as saying, reported PTI.
Currently in Goa, where they have been preparing for the upcoming FIFA World Cup qualifiers against Oman and Qatar, the winger has been an integral part of coach Igor Stimac’s plans. And CFC head coach Gregory was all praise for the talented youngster as well.
"In (Lallianzuala) Chhangte, we are adding one of India's brightest talents to our ranks. Along with his electric pace and fearless approach, he has the hunger to succeed and develop further. His involvement and progression with the national team also says a lot about his pedigree. We are now really excited to see him perform in the Chennaiyin blue," Gregory said.
Prior to his Delhi breakout season, Chhangte had played in the India Under-19 and Under-23 sides, which also included a loan spell with ISL side NorthEast United FC during the 2016 campaign. Getting few chances there and impressing in them, the player saw Delhi Dynamos calling. Chhangte would be wearing the No 7 jersey and would be joining the rest of the CFC squad in Ahmedabad after the World Cup qualifiers.