The Red and Gold Brigade have rope in the centre-back on a short-term deal.

SC East Bengal have completed the signing of Nepali centre-back Ananta Tamang on a short-term deal. The 24-year-old defender joins the side for their remaining two matches from Nepal’s top flight side Three Star Club. The move will see Tamang become the first Nepali player to play in the Indian Super League (ISL).

Tamang joins the Red and Gold as their AFC quota player and as a replacement for Australian centre-back Tomislav Mrcela, who has parted ways with them.

“I am happy to join SC East Bengal. I look forward to helping the club in every way I can. It is a proud moment for me,” he said in a release from the club.

Ananta Tamang this year

Tamang has played seven games for Three Star Club in the Nepali top flight this season. He missed Nepal’s two friendlies against Mauritius due to injury. After the completion of the short stint at the Kolkata-based side, the 24-year-old is expected to return to Nepal to play in the Nepal Super League (NSL) in April.

The defender played a crucial role in Nepal’s maiden run to the finals in last year’s SAFF Championship. Despite being just 24, Tamang has already earned 43 national team caps, including numerous age-group call-ups. A brief stint at Spanish side Marbella United, during the side’s 2016 European tour, saw Tamang become one of Nepal’s most coveted youngsters alongside Bimal Gharti Magar and Anjan Bista.

Hailed for his ability to win 1v1 challenges, the defender is a product of Nepal’s national academy. Tamang has proved a solid asset for the Gorkhalis for years and has been a regular since his debut in 2014. The then 18-year-old was crucial in Nepal’s AFC Challenge Cup triumph in 2016. Similarly, the centre-back was a part of Nepal’s U-23 side that won two successive gold medals at the 2016 and 2019 South Asian Games.

SC East Bengal, meanwhile have two matches remaining in their season. They play NorthEast United in their penultimate fixture on February 28, before concluding their campaign with a clash against Bengaluru FC five days later.

For more football updates, follow Khel Now on TwitterInstagram and join our community on Telegram.