Chennaiyin FC signs Edwin Vanspaul on two-year deal

Edwin moves to Chennaiyin after three seasons at Chennai City FC which won the 2018-19 I-League title. Edwin played in all 20 league games for CCFC in its title-winning season.

Starting his career as a striker, Edwin Vanspaul has been deployed as a central midfielder, winger, right-back and left-back over the years. He played majority of last season with Chennai City FC as a right-back.   -  Special Arrangement

Chennaiyin FC signed a two-year contract with 26-year-old Edwin Vanspaul from I-League side Chennai City FC (CCFC) on a permanent move subject to transfer window regulations.

Hailing from Neyveli township in Tamil Nadu, Edwin moves to Chennaiyin after three seasons at Chennai City FC, which won the 2018-19 I-League title. Edwin played in all 20 league games for the club in the previous campaign, starting in 19 of them.

Starting his career as a striker, Edwin has been deployed as a central midfielder, winger, right-back and left-back over the years. He played majority of last season with CCFC at right-back.

"I feel I have made the right move in my career, at the right time. I always believe that learning never stops and I look forward to learning more with my new teammates under Head Coach John Gregory. And having familiar faces around me like Sabir (Pasha) Coach, (Dhanpal) Ganesh and (Sinivasan) Pandiyan will surely help me. I am also waiting to connect with the fans of the club and repaying their support with good performances on the pitch," said Edwin.

"Edwin brings versatility and experience to our ranks. He was a pivotal player in Chennai City's title winning side. And being from Tamil Nadu himself, he will be well aware of the responsibilities that come with representing a team from the state. We're truly delighted to have him on board," said Head Coach John Gregory.

Edwin began his career with a short stint as striker for the Food Corporation of India (FCI) team in the Chennai Football Association (CFA) Senior Division League in 2010 before moving to Indian Bank where he played under coach Syed Sabir Pasha for three years.

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“I remember Edwin being a raw talent at Indian Bank. He has come a long way since then and has always showcased the eagerness to learn. He is a technically strong player and we expect him to hit the ground running,” said CFC assistant coach Pasha.

After Indian Bank, Edwin went on to represent semi-pro outfit Chennai FC before joining Chennai City FC in 2016.

He cemented his place in the CCFC starting lineup, scoring eight goals in a total of 22 appearances over the 2016 and 2017 CFA Senior Division League campaigns. His three-year spell at the club culminated in an I-League trophy last season. Edwin also started in all the three games in CCFC's run to the 2019 Super Cup semifinals last month.

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Interestingly, CFC fan favourite Dhanpal Ganesh is a close friend of Edwin's from childhood. The two represented Cuddalore district in their formative years as footballers and even played together in CCFC's first I-League campaign in 2016-17. Current Chennaiyin goalkeeper Karanjit Singh was also on loan with CCFC that season. CFC's other Tamil Nadu midfielder Sinivasan Pandiyan has also played alongside Edwin in the previous two seasons at CCFC, the latter while on loan from the ISL side.

Speaking about the move, Chennai City owner Rohit Ramesh said, “He is at the peak of his career. If he gets playing time [At Chennaiyin], an India call-up is on the cards.”

“He has been a loyal servant of the club. We picked him when no one believed in him and overall, he has contributed very well.”

(With inputs from Aashin Prasad.)