The teenagers represented the Juggernauts in the Hero Elite League last season.
Odisha FC have announced that five players from last season’s Under 18 side have signed professional contracts with the senior team.
After an impressive season in the Hero Elite League, defenders Jones Lalthakima (captain in the previous season) and Ronaldo Wairokpam, midfielder Nischay Adhikari and forwards Rishab Dobriyal and Akshunna Tyagi have been drafted into the OFC senior team ahead of the seventh edition of the Hero Indian Super League.
Speaking on the graduation of the youngsters, Club President Mr. Rohan Sharma said, “I am very happy to see our U-18 boys graduate to our senior squad. This is what Odisha FC is all about, developing our own talent for the team. Credit goes to U-18 coaching and scouting team for identifying and working on these boys so that they are able to take the next step.”
“Credit must also go to the boys for working hard and achieving their first step into becoming key members of our squad. I hope they keep putting in the same drive and determination to become the stars we know they can be.”
Expressing his delight, Youth Team Coach, Mr. Sandeep Alhan stated, “Being the youth team coach this is a very satisfactory moment for me that our five youth players are ready to play at the professional level.”
“They have shown their potential and also helped the team to reach the final round of Hero Elite League. This is the most important and challenging transition phase for them and they have to fight strong to earn their place in the starting lineup. I wish them all the best for a successful season and future.”
“This says a lot about the coaches and the support staff of the U18 team, and the Club management for trusting in the youth setup year on year. With a very gloomy end to the last season, this is definitely a silver lining for the boys and the club. For those who didn’t make it, I am sure there will be other doors for them. Wishing everyone best of luck and stay safe. Hope the coming seasons give us more opportunities to create memories,” Mr. Aakash Narula, Head of Football Development of the Club explained.