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ATK Mohun Bagan Rope in Midfielder Lalrinliana Hnamte from Rival Club East Bengal

Indian Super League side ATK Mohun Bagan announced the signing of 18-year-old midfielder Lalrinliana Hnamte from arch-rivals SC East Bengal by striking a pre-contract agreement for two years.

“Presenting our first signing for the upcoming season, Lalrinliana Hnamte. The player signs a pre-contract for two years,” ATKMB posted in a tweet.

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This is Mariners’ first investment in the summer transfer window ahead of the ISL 2022-23 season.

Hnamte joined Pune City FC U-18 side back in 2016 and featured in the 2018 I-League U-18. Subsequently, he featured for the Hyderabad FC reserve side.

Consistent performances in the age-group levels attracted attention from all corners, with ISL club SC East Bengal roping him in for the 2021-22 season.

Hnamte was a regular for the red and gold brigade, having played 17 matches last season. He proved to be a vital cog in the midfield, with 220 passes to his name.

The youngster also scored once, which helped SC East Bengal secure a point in a 2-2 draw against Chennaiyin FC.

However, he will not be able to take part in ATKMB’s AFC Cup group matches.

ATK Mohun Bagan have already registered a 28-member squad for the continental event.

The Calcutta Football League or the Durand Cup might provide the perfect opportunity for Hnamte to make his debut, if the Mariners feature in any of those meets.

ATK Mohun Bagan scripted a top-four finish in the ISL 2021-22, but were ousted by Hyderabad FC over a two-legged semi-final.

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