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Pune FC bring on striker James Moga for season ahead
Pune Football Club confirms the signing of South Sudan international striker James Joseph Moga for the forthcoming season.
Twenty-nine-year-old Moga becomes Pune FC’s first major signing and fills in the position occupied Guinean Mandjou Keita for two seasons.
The Nimule-born-Khartoum-grown striker will team up with Pune FC for the 2012-13 year ahead from Goan side Sporting Clube de Goa, where he has been in fine form last season, netting 15 goals in 19 I-League appearances and ended fourth top-scorer of the league.
Standing tall at 6’2” Moga, interestingly, is the tallest striker ever to be signed by the club since playing the Elite league from 2009-10.
Pune FC Head of Operations, said, “We are delighted to seal a deal with James and see him as an important part of our future. He is a top-class player, a very good finisher and a proven performer at club and international level. He is a very strong player and will provide us with good attacking options.”
Moga’s inclusion to the roster continues Pune FC’s trend of signing top-class players for the position. While Moga carries forward a successful one season experience on the Indian sub continent, Moga’s playing career spans over 12 years and began at Al-Hilal (Omdurman) – Sudan’s most successful team way back in 2000.
Since then Moga has plied his trade with Baniyas SC in UAE and his first club (Al-Hilal) for four seasons signing up twice for the former. Thereafter, he stayed put in Sudan with Al-Ramms Mirbih (2004-06), Sudan’s oldest club Al-Merrickh (2006-07) before moving to Muscat SC in Oman for a season.
His next stop was Muktijoddha Sangsad KS in Bangladesh (2010-11), where he powered the side to a runners-up spot in the Bangladesh League, before deciding to set foot in India.
In fact, Moga began his season on the sub-continent scoring a brace on his I-League debut in 2-2 draw versus Prayag United SC before grabbing a brace in his last I-League game of the season against the now-demoted Hindustan Aeronautics Limited.
Against Pune FC, Moga was equally active. In a Round-2 encounter, Moga earned a penalty and provided an assist for his former club during the 2-2 draw at the Balewadi Sports Complex. Subsequently, in the return-leg (Round-18) he scored the third goal in Sporting’s 4-2 win over Pune FC.
The strikers’ stint in India earned media glare after news spread that he led South Sudan’s first National squad against Kenyan premier league side Tusker in a football friendly (10thJuly, 2011) in the capital city of Juba organized to mark South Sudan’s independent statehood.
His penchant to score regularly turns out to be an asset to every team he has played for in the past.
Tanna added “We are happy to have made this signing and are looking forward to James continue his prolific goal scoring form with Pune FC.”
Apart from an impressive club career, Moga has made 14 appearances (only World Cup qualifiers) for Sudan and scored 3 goals since making his debut as a 17-year-old in 2000.
Moga, at Pune FC, joins India Under-22 skipper Jeje Lalpekhlua, Singam Subash Singh and Jeh Williamson and forms a four-man strike-force for Coach Derrick Pereira.
The South Sudan striker is currently with the national team camp in the capital city of Juba preparing for a friendly game against Uganda on 10th July, 2012.
Having signed the dotted line, Moga said, “I signed for Pune because Pune FC is a big team and Pune is a very good place to stay in India especially for my family.”