I-League: Indian Arrows coach Luis Norton de Matos upset with Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem pursuing European opportunities

The 17-year-old Dheeraj, who has been training under Matos for nearly a year has not extended his contract with the development squad of the All India Football Federation (AIFF) which expired on December 31, to quit the I-League.

I-League: Indian Arrows coach Luis Norton de Matos upset with Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem pursuing European opportunities
Courtesy: AIFF

New Delhi: Indian Arrows head coach Luís Norton de Matos on Monday said his star goalkeeper Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem should have stayed with the club and played for the I-League to gain further experience before heading for European trials.

The 17-year-old Dheeraj, who has been training under Matos for nearly a year has not extended his contract with the development squad of the All India Football Federation (AIFF) which expired on December 31, to quit the I-League.

The Manipuri will undergo trials for the Scottish professional football club Motherwell F.C. He has also been linked with trials at League One clubs – Blackburn Rovers and Charlton Athletic F.C.

"You know with this kind of level of players, even in Europe is the same," the Portuguese tactician told reporters during the pre-match press conference."

"Around players there are a lot of agents, advisers. These people don`t know what is the process of development for players."

"I think the best for Dheeraj will be to play the I-League."

"And after I-League if he has to take a trial in Europe, he will have 12-13 matches under his belt, that will give him more confidence to take these trials," Matos added.

The 64-year-old further explained and said even if Dheeraj gets selected in the trials he will have to wait till he turns 18 to play for any club.

"Even if he gets selected in the trials, he will have to wait till September until he turns eighteen to play for any club."

"He could have played and gained experience playing in I-League until then," Matos concluded.

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