Jamshedpur FC successfully retained defender and club captain Peter Hartley for one more season in the Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL). The Englishman delivered consistently on the field and secured two Hero-of-the-Match awards in 19 matches for the club last season.
The strong defender quickly became a fan favourite and was influential in leading Jamshedpur FC to a club record number of clean sheets (9) and ended the 2020-21 season with impressive stats – 52 tackles, 22 interceptions, 72 clearances and 23 blocks. He also scored 2 goals during the campaign.
After signing on the dotted line, Hartley expressed his joy. “I had an amazing season with Jamshedpur FC. We made a club record for the number of clean sheets in a season, and I hope we can better that record in the coming season and bring the Hero ISL trophy home,” he said.
Hartley also underlined the importance of Head Coach Owen Coyle’s presence. “We have a fantastic gaffer in Owen Coyle. I am thrilled to continue playing under his guidance and do well for him as well as for the fantastic supporters of Jamshedpur FC,” he said.
The Gaffer himself was ecstatic to have the skipper continue. “We were mean in defence the previous season and a lot of it was down to how the skipper organised things at the back for us. Like I said when we signed Peter, he is a big player for us who hates conceding goals. He brings with him so much experience from the English and Scottish Leagues, something that evidently rubbed off on to everyone around him. It was essential for Jamshedpur FC to have him again,” he said.
Hartley is a Sunderland AFC Academy product. The left-footed centre-back was scouted into the Sunderland AFC youth system as a 12-year-old in 2000 and rose up the ranks with his impressive performances. He played and trained with the Sunderland’s senior team, too, and made his debut in 2007 versus Leicester City under Roy Keane. He went on a loan spell to Chesterfield FC and then switched to Hartlepool United in 2009 and was the most capped player for Hartlepool during his four-year stint. Later, the Englishman had stints with Stevenage, Plymouth Argyle, Bristol Rovers and Blackpool before joining Motherwell FC.
The defender has played in prestigious tournaments in England like the FA Cup and the League Cup where he represented his clubs against the likes of Chelsea, Everton, Sheffield United, Watford and Wigan Athletic. He also played versus Burnley in 2009, which was then under the management of Coyle and also scored against Antonio Conte’s Chelsea in a 2016-17 League Cup tie. Hartley will continue wearing number 29 in the coming season.