ISL 2020-21: Jamshedpur FC signs Peter Hartley to strengthen defence

The 32-year-old defender will play in India after a successful season with Motherwell FC in the Scottish Premiership.

Peter Hartley celebrates after scoring during an FA Cup contest between Doncaster Rovers and Stevenage in January, 2014. Hartley has played 418 matches in his career since his senior team debut in 2007, keeping 122 clean sheets and scoring 37 goals. - GETTY IMAGES

Jamshedpur FC on Sunday announced the signing of defender Peter Hartley from England for the Indian Super League 2020-21 season.

The robust defender will play in India after a successful season with Motherwell FC in the Scottish Premiership. He captained the team to third place in the league, only behind Scottish legacy teams Celtic and Rangers, helping the team qualify for UEFA Europa League 2020-21.

Hartley has played 418 matches in his career since his senior team debut in 2007, keeping 122 clean sheets and scoring 37 goals.

‘Honoured’

Delighted at joining Jamshedpur, Hartley said, “I’m honoured to be given an opportunity to sign for Jamshedpur, a club with ambition to win. I certainly didn’t have to think twice about playing for Owen Coyle, a manager held in high regard. I promise to give 110 per cent every single day in order to bring success and silverware to the Jamshedpur supporters. At every club that I have played for, my goal has always been to add glory to my jersey number till the day I depart.”

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Hartley is a Sunderland AFC Academy product. The left-footed centre-back was scouted into the Sunderland AFC youth system as a 12-year-old in 2000 and rose up the ranks with his impressive performances.

He played and trained with the Sunderland’s senior team, too, and made his debut in 2007 versus Leicester City under Roy Keane. He went on a loan spell to Chesterfield FC and then switched to Hartlepool United in 2009, being the most capped player for Hartlepool during his four-year stint as well as captain for two seasons.

 

Later, the Englishman had stints with Stevenage, Plymouth Argyle, Bristol Rovers and Blackpool before joining Motherwell FC.

‘Massive signing’

Coyle was thrilled to have Hartley in the squad. Underlining the importance of signing the defender, he said, “Hartley is a massive signing for us. He brings in so much experience from playing in the English leagues and the Scottish Premiership. He is a central defender with great capability and a born leader. He is a fighter who is mentally strong and a fierce competitor. Hartley hates conceding goals and that’s the attitude I need from my centre-back.”

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The defender has played in prestigious tournaments in England like the FA Cup and the League Cup where he represented his clubs against the likes of Chelsea, Everton, Sheffield United, Watford and Wigan Athletic. He also played versus Burnley in 2009, which was then under the management of Owen Coyle and also scored against Antonio Conte’s Chelsea in a 2016-17 League Cup tie.

Hartley will don the colours of Jamshedpur with the number 29.

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