THE BLOG BY CPD FOOTBALL | The World of Indian football and beyond by Chris Punnakkattu Daniel

Mikaël Silvestre: India is a big adventure

Mikaël Silvestre

It was the news of the year for Indian football when Mikaël Silvestre announced his transfer to Mumbai-based Dodsal FC a week ago.

The former French international (40 caps) has played for Stade Rennes, Inter Milan, Manchester United, FC Arsenal and Werder Bremen and he is set to start a new chapter in his career as a professional footballer.

The 35-year old defender is currently keeping himself fit at his former club Manchester United after he had been released at the end of last season by Bundesliga side SV Werder Bremen. Silvestre had hopes to sign a deal with Premiership club West Ham United but things didn’t work out and he was left stranded at Old Trafford as Sir Alex Ferguson gave him the chance to train with the Red Devils.

So Mikaël Silvestre took a decision to join the newly founded Dodsal FC in January 2013 as part of their ambitious plans to gain promotion to the 1st Division I-League.

“I have had the offer since the summer and now I have decided to accept it,” the Frenchman told German newspaper ‘Kreiszeitung Syke’. “At the end of October I will sign the contract. Until christmas we will stay at our old house (in Manchester), then we will sell it. In January 2013 I will join my new club.”

“I have never been to India, this will be very exiting… a big adventure for me,” said Silvestre. “Cricket is the number one sport in India and football is just starting to develop. So you can move things forward over there.”

Asked about the tenure of his India plans, Silvestre told the paper: “I think I will be there for two years. Maybe even longer. Let’s see… It will depend on my fitness and how I feel like.”

Dodsal FC was formed in May 2012 with an ambitious plan by the Dodsal Group to take the club to the 1st Division next year and to reach the AFC Champions League within the next five years. The Dodsal Group is going into the new season with a heavy budget and they have already signed renowned Indian players like NP Pradeep, Irungbam Surkumar Singh, Mohammed M. Rafi and many more.

The signing of Mikaël Silvestre is a clear statement by the club and the Indian football fraternity is looking forward to this breath of fresh air.

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