FC Pune City have signed former Arsenal and Liverpool winger Jermaine Pennant.
The Englishman has been roped in by Pune as a replacement for midfielder Omar Andres Rodrigues, who was recently ruled out of the inaugural season of the Indian Super League (ISL).
"FC Pune City have signed English footballer and former Arsenal and Liverpool player Jermaine Pennant as a replacement to injured Colombian Omar Andres Rodrigues Martinez. Omar Rodrigues will not play the rest of the Hero Indian Super League season due to a kidney complaint," read a statement on the ISL website.
Pennant has the experience of playing in the Premier League for several years. The former England U21 international has featured for Arsenal, Liverpool and most recently Stoke City. The 31-year-old had made 11 appearances in all competitions for the Potters last season but they chose not renew his contract.
The midfielder now joins former Premier League stars like Robert Pires, Freddie Ljungberg, David James, Nicolas Anelka, Sebastien Squillaci, Luis Garcia, Josemi and Andre Santos to feature in the inaugural edition of the ISL.
Pennant moved to Arsenal in 1999, at the age of 15, from Notts County. In 2006, he joined Liverpool and made 77 appearances in all competitions during the next two seasons. The winger was particularly impressive in the Reds' run to the 2006-07 Champions League final, during which he put in several good performances.
Meanwhile, Pune will take on table-toppers Atletico de Kolkata at the Salt Lake Stadium on Friday evening.
Pune midfielder and Greek's stand-in captain at the World Cup Kostas Katsouranis is well aware of the task at hand but feels the sixth-placed team can turn around their fortunes soon.
"It's a new team, so it's not easy, the last game was the best for us, we created a lot of scoring opportunities and we want to continue with that kind of work," the 35-year-old stated.