Centre-back Pratik Chaudhari has expressed his delight at returning to Jamshedpur FC after two seasons with Bengaluru FC and looks forward to helping the Red Miners in their quest to retain the League Winners’ Shield in the upcoming Hero Indian Super League (ISL) season.

Chaudhari who played for Jamshedpur FC in Hero ISL 2018-19 campaign will don the red and blue jersey again this year as the club look to bolster its defence. Having already retained the services of Eli Sabia, Chaudhari is another solid addition to the rearguard.

The 32-year-old defender pointed out that always felt a connection with the club and a city and return to Jamshedpur FC felt inevitable for him the moment he left the Furnace three years ago.

Chaudhari spoke to the Jamshedpur FC Media team and here are the excerpts from the interview.

How do you feel about donning a Jamshedpur FC jersey again after coming back?

I'm delighted to be back at Jamshedpur. I always felt that I will come back someday and I'm glad that it has happened now. Wearing the JFC threads was really special then and being the Champions of India now, makes it even more special.

What does Jamshedpur as a city & club mean to you?

I've lived in this city before. So I know that football has always been a sport that is much appreciated and loved by the people here. Jamshedpur FC is a massive club. And one of the main reasons behind coming back here is that I always felt comfortable with the people at the club. The professionalism and the positive intent that they've maintained throughout is something we all admire as players. So for me, it's like another home away from home.

You have played in Jamshedpur in front of packed crowds. What do you think of the fans?

They're undoubtedly one of the best in India. The zeal & enthusiasm they have for the team is second to none. I'm really excited & looking forward to playing in front of them again.

How excited are you to learn and grow under the new gaffer Aidy Boothroyd?

I'm very happy to have Aidy Boothroyd as our gaffer. The experience he brings to the club is what we need to win the title & defend the shield. So yes I'm very excited and eager to play under his guidance and gain valuable learnings.

Message for the fans…

You guys have always been amazing supporters. It's not so long now before we meet again. Keep showing your love & support & we'll try our best to make you all proud. Can't wait to see you guys at the furnace again.