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Indian first: Pune FC set transfer fee trend, sell medio Lester
Pune Football Club completed an Indian football first with the sale of attacking midfielder Lester Fernandez last week.
The 25-year-old was officially transferred by Pune FC to enable his move to Kolkata-based Prayag United SC after both clubs mutually reached agreement of a transfer fee amounting to Rs. 20 lakh.
Lester’s mid-contract transfer relieves him a year ahead of his deal with Pune FC, which ran until the end of the 2012-13 season. The players’ move, Pune FC considers, is a path breaking exercise that the club aims to make as a trend in order to become self sustaining.
Chirag Tanna, Pune FC Head Operations, validates the transfer saying, “Lester has been transferred to Prayag United for Rs. 20 lakh. Prayag United SC officials have been in touch with us for some time now and the deal concluded last week. Pune FC’s ultimate aim is to become self sustaining and player transfer remains a key aspect in achieving the aim.”
Moreover with Karma Tsewang showing excellent form, the experienced Shanmugam Venkatesh and talented Arata Izumi extending their respective contracts and a host of exciting youngsters ready to move up the ranks, Lester for the season ahead became a surplus to requirement leading to the transfer.
With Lester’s transfer complete, Pune FC backed with a strong youth set up aim to promote the young talent at the Peninsula Pune Football Club Academy (PPFCA) who currently are mid-way through with the 2-year youth development programme chalked out for them.
Recently, the Pune FC Under-19s gave their management ample reason to look up at several bright prospects that emerged from their ranks by annexing the Under-20 I-League title with an undefeated record.
“The youngsters are working hard and have in them the desire to step up to play top notch football in India. There are quite a few knocking on the doors of selection,” added Tanna.
Having struck the deal, Pune FC believes that as a professional club transfer deals like Lester’s can go on to help acquire younger pool of players in future.