The full-back won the ISL League Shield last season with HFC.

Hyderabad FC have completed the transfer of defender Asish Rai to ATK Mohun Bagan, for an undisclosed fee, the club announced on Monday.

The 23-year-old has been with Hyderabad FC since the club’s first season in 2019-20 and has played an important part for the team over the course of three seasons. He made 48 appearances for the club, starting 15 games in HFC’s recent title-winning campaign, and was called up for the national team camp after his performances in the ISL 2021-22.

A native of Sikkim, Rai is a product of the FC Pune Academy, which later became the Pune City academy. Having come through the academy, he was loaned to the Indian Arrows in 2017. Rai played two seasons with the Arrows and made 32 appearances in the I-League, scoring and assisting once each.

Later, he joined the newly-formed Hyderabad FC following the disbandment of FC Pune City. He made his HFC debut against the erstwhile ATK FC in the 2019-20 ISL season. In his debut campaign for Hyderabad FC, Asish Rai made 14 appearances as the club finished with the wooden spoon.

He really came into prominence under Manolo Marquez, who took over as the head coach from the 2020-21 season. As an express right-back, who would bombard up and down the right flank and put in accurate crosses into the opposition box, Rai was soon among the best right-backs in the country. The 23-year-old played 18 times and assisted twice that season.

His productivity again increased the following season (2021-22) as Rai produced three assists en route to Hyderabad FC clinching the ISL trophy. He played 16 matches last season after suffering from an injury and COVID-19 later in the season.

Overall, Asish Rai assisted six times for Hyderabad FC in his three seasons at the club. While he is yet to make his senior India debut, the 23-year-old has earned multiple call-ups to the national camp and has also played for the U-23 team.

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