Indian Super League team FC Pune City on Wednesday announced former Chelsea and Barcelona star Eidur Gudjohnsen as its marquee player for the 2016 edition of the league..
The 37-year-old was part of the Chelsea side that won the Premier League twice in a row in 2004-05 and 2005-06 and also won La Liga and Champions League with Barcelona in 2008-09.
Introducing the striker, Gaurav Modwel, CEO of the club said, “To me Eidur is a true marquee who will be an inspiration to the rest of the squad. He has made valuable contributions to every team he has been a part of – Chelsea, Barcelona or Iceland National team. I am anxious to witness his sublime touches and creative vision which could unsettle any defence. I am sure that both as a world class player and a thorough gentleman he will leave a lasting impression on fellow players, fans, and Indian football lovers at large.”
“There were other clubs interested in me but when FC Pune City show their interest, intent and plans, I knew this was it. I have the confidence of the coach and will ensure that they find it difficult to leave me out. Everyone needs to be motivated to succeed, and I have the same aim here. I love the sport. I still love going to training every day,” Gudjohnsen said expressing his joy on joining the club.
In 1998, the forward joined Bolton Wanderers in England. And in his second season with the Trotters he became their top-scorer with 21 goals. This secured a £4m transfer to Chelsea in the summer of 2000. After two successive title wins with Chelsea, scoring scored 78 goals in 263 appearances for Chelsea, Gudjohnsen joined European champions Barcelona in the summer of 2006. And his stay at the Catalan giants saw the club winning the treble in 2009.
Pune head coach Antonio Habas was excited with the news. “Eidur’s has experience of playing at highest levels and a professional motivation to succeed. I’ve admired him from afar for many years and am very excited at the prospect of us working together for the benefit of FC Pune City,” Habas said.
Co-owner Hrithik Roshan was delighted to have the Iceland stalwart joining the ranks of his club. “Gudjohnsen has proved his mettle while playing in the top teams and leagues of the world. This is a footballer who will bring immense experience to the squad. His signing will further strengthen our squad and I extend him a warm welcome into the FCPC family,” said Hrithik.