Indian Super League side FC Pune City has become the first team ahead of the main ISL 2016 season to have lost their marquee player to injury. Will the same happen with other sides as well in days to come? That remains to be seen, but for now that is something Indian football fans would really be not hoping to witness.
Iceland football legend Eidur Gudjohnsen suffered a knock on his left ankle just days ahead of the ISL 2016, scheduled to kick off from October 1.
"What was an exciting start to my new journey in India with FC Pune City, has come to an abrupt end unfortunately. Just a few days back, on my left ankle, what I thought was a niggle, turned out to be more than that," said the 38-year-old forward, who was recently a part of Euro 2016.
"My heartfelt gratitude and best wishes go to the FC Pune City management, my team mates and coach Antonio Habas who put so much faith in me as their marquee player. The fans and people here who gave me a warm welcome, deserved more from me, but unfortunately my campaign with FC Pune City has to end for now.
"I look forward to being back in the near future and wish FC Pune City the best of luck for ISL 2016."
The lookout for a new marquee player has already begun for the side, co-owned by Hrithik Roshan, along with a replacement for Cameroonian defender Andre Bikey, who picked up a tendon injury as well.
"The injuries to Eidur and Andre both are unfortunate developments for us," said former Atletico de Kolkata coach Habas. "Eidur had a very good pre-season training stint with us in Spain where he showed us his formidable skills. But then injuries are a part of every sport and football is a team game so we have to move on."
FC Pune City take on Mumbai City FC in their opening game of ISL 2016 on October 3 at the Balewadi Stadium.