The skipper led the Marina Machans to the final of the ISL last season.

Chennaiyin FC skipper Lucian Goian announced on social media that he has parted ways with the club after his current deal expired. The centre-back was instrumental in leading the Marina Machans’ charge to the final with spirited performances from the back, where he formed a potent partnership with Eli Sabia.

Goian featured in all but one game for Chennaiyin last season and played 1778 minutes for the club. He notched up the second-highest number of interceptions in the league (49) on par with teammate Anirudh Thapa. In his time with the team, Lucian Goian averaged 3.1 tackles/game and also had a respectable passing accuracy of 80.37%.

Chennaiyin FC posted a farewell message for Lucian Goian on social media

He also chipped in with two goals. The second one was arguably the most important in Chennaiyin FC’s season, as it came in the final minutes of the do-or-die game against his former club Mumbai City FC. That goal took the Marina Machans to the playoffs — a thought which was a seemingly distant dream when they were tottering at the bottom after the first four games with no goals scored.

Taking to Instagram, Goian put up a message saying, “Thank you, Chennaiyin FC! It was an honour to be your captain! Big ‘Thank You!’ to the amazing fans of CFC, to the great players and also to the coaching staff. All the very best for future.”

The Romanian came to the club from Mumbai where he had previously spent three years and became their most-capped player. He also holds the club record for most tackles and interceptions made. His tenure with both clubs shows how important and indispensable he was to the teams he represented in the ISL.

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Lucian Goian is 37 now and his next move is yet to be determined, but Chennaiyin have lost another one of their star players. It will be a challenge to find a suitable replacement to partner Sabia ahead of the 2020-21 season.

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