Jhingan thanks ATK Mohun Bagan set-up and fans in his farewell message
Sandesh Jhingan has thanked the ATK Mohun Bagan set-up and the club’s fans after joining top-tier Croatian side HNK Sibenik. The Mariners, who reached the final of the 2020-21 Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL), announced the departure of their star defender ahead of their AFC Cup Group D South Zone opener against Bengaluru FC on Wednesday.
2020-21 AIFF Men’s Footballer of the Year, Jhingan left a heart-warming message on Twitter. “I have nothing but a big thank you to say to everyone involved at ATK Mohun Bagan. The last year was my comeback from injury and it turned out to be one of my best years and it was all because of my brother like teammates and coach Antonio Lopez Habas and his staff, Alvaro Ros Bernal, Manuel Cascallana, Javier Pindado and Sanjay Sen who all motivated me and pushed me to improve everyday and I will be thankful for what they all have done for me in this past year.
“Mr [Sanjiv] Goenka [principal owner] and all the management members have been very supportive and they know although this decision means one player less for them it means one fan more for them as I will always be a fan for the way the club is run.
“A big thank you to the fans who supported me, who make this beautiful club what it is and all the best to the team [for] the AFC Cup starting today and the [Hero] Indian Super League [starting later in the year]. ATK Mohun Bagan have a strong team and I know they will always be pushing for trophies whenever they play,” he wrote.
Jhingan has featured in all Hero ISL seasons but one – the sixth edition in 2019-20 when he had to miss the entire campaign on account of an injury. The 28-year-old made his Hero ISL debut with Kerala Blasters FC in 2014 and stayed with the southern club till 2020. In his first season in India’s premier football league, he had also won the Emerging-Player-of-the-Season award.
Jhingan, who has 98 Hero ISL appearances to his name, joined ATK Mohun Bagan ahead of the 2020-21 Hero ISL and played an important role in their reaching the final. Jhingan recently also drew a lot of praise from national coach Igor Stimac after his performances in India’s remaining three games in the 2022 FIFA World Cup and 2023 AFC Asian Cup qualifiers in Doha.