The 30-year-old has prior experience of playing for league heavyweights Mohun Bagan and East Bengal.

Days after the conclusion of the Super Cup, I-League champions Chennai City FC have turned their attentions to preparations for the upcoming season. The Lions have roped in NEROCA FC’s veteran Japanese midfielder Katsumi Yusa into their ranks. The announcement of the signing of the 30-year-old was made through their official social media accounts with a picture of Yusa signing the contract papers.

As the champions of the I-League, Chennai City will be participating in the Asian Champions League (ACL) Qualifiers next season, for which they will need the services of a player of Asian origin.

The Lions have become the sixth Indian team the attacking midfielder would feature for after having played previously for ONGC, Mohun Bagan, NorthEast United, East Bengal and most recently NEROCA. His stay with the Mariners was the most noteworthy as Yusa captained the Mariners to the I-League title in the 2014-15 season.

Moreover, the midfielder has finished as runners-up with Bagan twice – firstly in the 2015-16 campaign and then in his final season in 2016-17. The Japanese has also won the Federation Cup with Bagan in the 2015-16.

Known for his goalscoring abilities and versatility, Yusa has scored over 50 goals throughout his career in Indian football and comes to Chennai on the back of yet another spectacular season in which he found the back of the net six times for NEROCA.


The midfielder brings steel, strength and more goals to a Chennai midfield which is already stacked with several goalscoring midfielders. The move comes after reports of the Japanese attacking midfielder rejoining his former employers Bagan, which forced the Mariners to release an official statement to deny the move.

It would be interesting to see how the Japanese fits into the southerners’ midfield in the ACL Qualifiers along with the likes of Nestor Gordillo and Sandro Rodriguez and how Akbar Nawas uses him in the continental competition.