Punjab FC have announced the final four additions to their Indian roster for the 2023-24 season – midfielder Sweden Fernandes, defenders Nongmaikapam Suresh Meitei and Mashoor Shereef and goalkeeper Shibinraj Kunnaiyil.

The 23-year-old Sweden Fernandes has been signed on a season-long loan from ISL side, Chennaiyin FC. He had played 15 matches for NEROCA FC on loan last season and scored three goals and provided one assist. The talented left-footed youngster is a popular name in the Goan football circuit, having turned up for the youth teams of FC Goa, Dempo SC and Sporting Club de Goa.

Kerala-born centre-back Mashoor Shereef has joined The Club on a one-year contract having spent some part of his last season with NorthEast United FC. He started his professional career at Chennai City before moving to NorthEast in October 2020. He has made 37 appearances for the club across three seasons. In March 2021, the defender also made his debut for the Indian national team against UAE.

Punjab FC has also signed the services of defender Nongmaikapam Suresh Meitei after his exploits with the club in the successful I-League campaign last season. The 29-year-old Manipuri centre-back has signed a one-year contract with the club after playing 10 matches in the I-League and 3 matches in the Super Cup last season. He recently played for the

Indian Army FT side that reached the quarterfinals of the Durand Cup and scored a goal in the group stages.

Shibinraj Kunniyil is an experienced goalkeeper who has played for Mohun Bagan, Kerala Blasters, Gokulam Kerala, Churchill Brothers and Sreenidi Deccan in his career. The Kerala-born player played 19 matches for Gokulam Kerala in the previous I-League, where he had jointly secured the highest number of clean sheets in the league. He was last seen in action for Indian Air Force FT in the 2023 Durand Cup.

Speaking about the new signings, Football Director of Punjab FC, Nikolaos Topoliatis said, “We are delighted to welcome these young and experienced players to our Club as they will add valuable qualities both on and off the field and strengthen our squad. We are confident that they’ll prove to be a vital part of Punjab FC’s future as we move towards bigger goals as a Club.”

Speaking ahead of the new season, when asked about what is the mindset in the team, the Punjab FC coach Staikos Vergetis said, “We will play every game like it’s the final because that’s the quality ISL requires from us.”

He said, “I feel that we did the correct movements during the summer. We kept 14 players from the previous year. In football, you cannot keep everyone happy. Apart from these 14 players, we took some talented players from Indian football. We also have good young Indian players who we hope to help become professional players in the coming years.”

“This is my first season in India and I will give my hundred per cent in everything. I will try to help the team,” he added

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