34-year-old Njazi Kuqi has signed for the two-time Indian Super League champions ATK as their eighth foreign player for the upcoming season of ISL. Kuqi, a Finnish forward, joins the Teddy Sheringham-led side after Manchester United academy graduate Tom Thorpe completed his move to the Kolkata outfit earlier this week.
Kuqi had earlier plied his trade with TuS Koblenz, a German team, where he struck 11 goals in his 52 appearances. Apart from his stints at FC Lahti, where he kick started his career and Panionios G.S.S, Kuqi also spent his time at English clubs namely Blackpool and Peterborough United on loan from Birmingham City. Vushtrri-born Njazi Kuqi also served for his national side between the years 2005 and 2013 having registered five goals in his 12 international caps for the Huuhkajat (The Eagle-owls).
The 6'2'' right-footed centre-forward believes that the Sanjiv Goenka-owned outfit will help him improve his game and also shared his happiness on the move to his new club. ''I am thrilled to see so many followers of football especially in Kolkata where the game is closest to a religion. I am happy to be associated with a champion team like ATK. My learning graph will only rise with this league. I just hope to give my best,'' he commented.
With Njazi Kuqi, ATK have completed their quota of eight foreigners. The other seven foreign players are Robbie Keane, José Egas Dos Santos Branco, Conor Thomas, Jussi Albert Jääskeläinen, Carl Baker, Jordi Figueras Montel and Tom Thorpe.