ISL 2020-21: Jamshedpur FC sign Stephen Eze to bolster defense

Stephen Eze - Nigeria
Tolu Olasoji
After English defender Peter Hartley, the Nigerian international becomes the club's sixth foreign signing...

Jamshedpur FC have announced the signing of defender Stephen Eze for the 2020-21 Indian Super League (ISL).

The Nigerian will join Peter Hartley, Alex Monteiro de Lima, Aitor Monroy, David Grande and Nerijus Valskis among the overseas players at the club.

The 26-year-old last appeared for the Nigerian national team in May 2018 after failing to make the final squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup In May 2018, only months after finishing runners-up at the 2018 African Nations Championship in Morocco. He has 13 international caps to his name and is set to don the number 66 Jamshedpur shirt.

Eze has had a fairly successful stint with Lokomotiv Plovidiv where he won the Bulgarian Cup in 2018-19 and finished runners-up in the 2019-20 Bulgarian First League and as a result going on to play four times in the 2019-20 UEFA Europa League.

Besides, standing 6 feet 6 inches tall, the center back had started his senior playing career at Lobi Stars and turned up for fellow Nigerian outfits such as Sunshine Stars, Ifeanyi Ubah with whom he won the 2017 Nigerian Super Cup and Kano Pillars before moving to Bulgaria.

Stephen Eze

Eze had joined Kazakhstan Premier League club FC Tobol earlier this year but his time with the club was cut short after having to undergo a surgery following an injury he sustained during a pre-season friendly.

Commenting on the signing, Jamshedpur FC head coach Owen Coyle hopes that Eze will be an integral figues in his side's back line.

"Eze will be crucial in making our defence mean and miserly. He comes with a solid reputation and representing a World Cup playing nation like Nigeria requires some serious talent. His towering personality and unyielding attitude towards the game could make him one of the best center-backs in the ISL," said the former Chennaiyin FC tactician.

After putting pen to paper, Eze stated, "I have been following the ISL closely and it is one of the most exciting and competitive leagues. I have seen the passion of the fans of Jamshedpur, which is why I’m excited and cannot wait to get started. My aim is simple, and it is to win. There have been some exciting signings with the club in the past few weeks and I look forward to work with my teammates and end the season with silverware."