INDIAN FOOTBALL

East Bengal add Croatian defender Franjo Prce to their ranks

Wolves

SC East Bengal, on Wednesday, completed the signing of U-21 Croatian defender Franjo Prce. He is the third foreign signing for the red and gold brigade.

Amir Dervišević from Slovenia and Tomislav Mrcela are the two other players arriving from abroad.

Prce joins East Bengal from Croatian club NK Slaven Belupo. He has even made a senior team appearance for Italian oufit Lazio.

East Bengal bolster backline with Franjo Prce

During his time at Lazio, the Croatian shared locker rooms with names like Ciro Immobile and ex-Germany striker Miroslav Klose. Immobile was part of the squad that helped Italy clinch the European Championship earlier in the year.

Stefan de Vrij, current Inter Milan centre-back, was also in Lazio colours during that time. Other names include Italy’s Antonio Candreva and Argentina’s Lucas Biglia.

Prce said: “I have played with some of the big names in world football and it has helped me grow on and off the field. I think I can use my experience here in the ISL and try to help my team do well”.

The Croatian is eager to experience India and knows well of the large fan base. Prce expresses his love for the fans. He says that players play for the fans and their absence was unfortunate.

East Bengal will greatly benefit, given the vast experience Prce brings with him

Originally from Čapljina, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Prce began his career at the youth academy of Croatia’s Hajduk Split. After his stay in Italy, Prce transferred to another Croatian club, Istra 1961, on loan before once more moving. This time he went to Cyprus, turning out for AC Omonia.

The 25-year-old had stints with FC Karpaty Lviv, Ukraine. At home in Croatia, he also played for NK Varaždin and NK Slaven Belupo. Prce was called up for the Croatian under-17 team in the 2013 UEFA European Under-17 Championships. He has been a part of the team in the 2013 FIFA under-17 World Cup as well.

Prce is a sensible defender. Despite his younger age, he will greatly add to the squad’s experience. The Croatian is no stranger to travelling and has played with and against the best.

SC East Bengal is set to face Jamshedpur FC (21st Nov. 2021) in its first game of the Indian Super League 2021-22 season at Tilak Maidan. 

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