Mohun Bagan have successfully completed the signing of Yuta Kinowaki after his contract expired at Shillong Lajong at the end of last season. The 26-year-old Japanese midfielder had guided the Meghalaya based side to a 5th place finish in the 2017 I-League.
Kinowaki spent his youth years with Kyoto Sanga in his native Japan but soon moved to Europe to play for Polish side Energetyk Gryfino. He would even go on to have a short stint with the Latvian side, BFC Daugavpils.
His first tryst in Indian football came in the form of newly-promoted Aizawl FC in the 2016 I-League, where his team was subsequently relegated. The following season he made a move to fellow Northeast Indian side Shillong Lajong where he formed a vital cog in Thangboi Singto's scheme of plans.
He will link up with former Lajong teammate Aser Dipanda who ended up as the top-scorer of the last I-League with 11 goals. The Mariners have filled their quota of signing a minimum of two players from an Asian Football Confederation (AFC) member nation with Aussie midfielder Diogo Ferreira being unveiled at the club earlier this week.
The Green and Maroon authorities have made it clear that they are not interested in retaining any of the overseas players from last season except for the talismanic Sony Norde. Talks with the Haitian enigma is set to resume next week with the player too, keen on a return for a fourth consecutive season.
Meanwhile, Bagan open their 2017 Calcutta Football League campaign at home on Monday against Southern Samity.