Chennaiyin FC re-signs defender Eli Sabia

The 29-year-old Brazilian is back for a second stint with the Indian Super League defending champion, having made 11 appearances in the 2016 campaign.

Eli Sabia Chennaiyin FC

Eli Sabia with Chennaiyin FC manager John Gregory.   -  SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

 

A day after Henrique Sereno confirmed his departure from the club, Chennaiyin FC announced the signing of centre-back Eli Sabia on a one-year deal.

The 29-year-old Brazilian is back for a second stint with the Indian Super League defending champion, having made 11 appearances in the 2016 campaign.

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“I am very happy to return to Chennaiyin FC. I always felt at home during my first stint with the club, and I am looking forward to working with John (Gregory) and my teammates. I know many of the boys from before and can see that the family atmosphere within the club has remained intact," Sabia said, who last played for Al-Raed FC in the Saudi Arabian top tier.

"Even though I moved to another country I had been following the team’s fortunes last season so I am determined to help the club retain the title and can’t wait to meet the fans back home in Chennai,” he added.

Head coach John Gregory said of his new signing, “Eli is physically strong and has a commanding presence at the back. He has played for the club before and knows what it means to be wearing these colours. He was playing in one of the top leagues of Asia and has all the qualities to play an integral role in our title defence.”

Following his first-ever season in Indian football back in the third season of the ISL, Eli moved to Brazilian club Sertaozinho FC before switching to Al-Raed in Saudi Arabia. Eli returns to CFC on the back of 21 league appearances for Al-Raed which also saw him score one goal.

The defender has already joined the pre-season training base of the two-time ISL champion in Malaysia and was presented the number 13 jersey by coach Gregory on Saturday.