The Haitian international has signed a one and a half year contract with the Red and Gold…

After a lot of hiccups and controversies regarding Wedson Anselme signing for East Bengal, the Haitian international officially signed on the dotted line for 18 months. The player was officially unveiled on Tuesday evening and addressed the press thereafter.

Wedson who has played three matches for Haiti joined Bangladeshi side SK Jamal Dhanmondi on loan from Haitian club Aigle Noir AC in 2013 and never returned back to Haiti. His loan spell kept on extending and within the period from 2013 to 2016 Wedson scored 67 goals from 72 matches in all competitions. The prolific striker was awarded the ‘golden boot’ for being the highest scorer in the last two editions of Bangladesh Premier League.

The 30-year old striker was supposed to don the Red and Gold colours at the beginning of the season from the Calcutta Football League onwards but it did not happen as he was still contracted with Dhanmondi club till 6th November and they did not release him. In the month of May Wedson had come to Kolkata to hold talks with the Red and Gold officials and had given the thumps up to the move at the time but it was Dhanmondi’s release letter which was needed and Wedson was denied it by them.

Sony Norde’s compatriot and best friend returned to Bangladesh in August to play this year’s edition of the Bangladesh Premier league and scored 9 goals from 11 matches before officially leaving Dhanmondi.

The prolific striker from Haiti landed in Kolkata on Monday night and visited the club tent in the evening to meet the press and answer all the queries and questions.

On his new destination East Bengal, Wedson Anselme said, “I am very excited to come here. I know it will be a difficult challenge but I will try to prove myself and make the fans happy. I know the fans are desperate to see the I-League trophy in their favourite club’s trophy room. I will give my everything to win the I-League this year.”

Wedson said East Bengal officials had been in talks with him since Dhanmondi came over to Kolkata to play in the IFA Shield in 2014. “The officials wanted me from a long time but I was in a contract with Dhanmondi but was very much eager to ply my trade in Kolkata as Sony Norde has been a big figure here”, he added.
Wedson loves to lead the attack but can play on the wings as well as a withdrawn forward. “I am a striker as well as a winger. I have assisted in lot of goals for Dhanmondi. So now it is up to the coach to decide where I shall fit. I will discuss with Trevor Morgan once the practice begins from December.”

Regarding his friend Norde and bow he may be his opponent against arch-rivals Mohun Bagan he said, “Sony is my best friend and will remain so forever. We played together in Dhanmondi for two years. I am still in touch with him. Before coming here he had given me the idea about the rivalry between East Bengal and Mohun Bagan and I’m excited to be part of that derby. But my decision to join East Bengal is totally my decision and thanks to the Almighty for that. Sony had no role to play in it.”

Wedson will fly to Haiti on Thursday morning to spend quality time with his family before returning back to Kolkata on 14th December to join East Bengal training which commences from 19th December under head coach Morgan and newly appointed physical trainer Simon Maltby.

Meanwhile, football secretary Santosh Bhattacharya has officially announced that Korean superstar Do-Dong Hyun will be released by East Bengal soon and if he decides to stay he will not be registered for the I-League as Morgan had strictly said that he does not fit in his plans.

The club also announced that they had began releasing their own daily newspaper which includes news on East Bengal team news, player interviews, youth football development, football school quizzes, columns from former footballers and so on. Two editions have already been released and the third edition is coming in December featuring an exclusive interview with Wedson. From January it will be distributed to each subscribe on a monthly basis. Each edition costs Rs 10/-.

Report by Khel Now Correspondent Kushankur Rony Rakshit. Sports passionate and content writer. He is big football and cricket fan.