CHENNAIYIN FC announces retaining Colombian forward John Stiven Mendoza Valencia for the second season of the Hero Indian Super League.
The 23-year-old will be joining Chennaiyin FC on loan from Brazilian giants Corinthians to feature in the 2015 Hero ISL. Mendoza was one of the best foreign performers in the first edition of the ISL, scoring four goals in seven starts and became a popular figure among the Chennaiyin FC faithful.
Mendoza had joined Chennaiyin last year after the expiry of his contract at Colombian outfit Envigado and played a key role in Chennaiyin finishing top of the league standings.
The former Colombia youth international netted a brace in the 5-1 home victory over Mumbai City FC and also scored home and away against FC Pune City.
Unfortunately Mendoza suffered an injury in the home fixture against FC Pune City and was ruled out for the rest of the ISL. But his performances caught the attention of many big clubs in South America and he was eventually signed up by Corinthians.
Mendoza was a regular member of the Corinthians squad that reached the semi-finals of the 2015 Sao Paulo state championship and had also been featuring in the Brazilian Serie A, where Corinthians are the current league leaders.
Chennaiyin FC co-owner Mrs Vita Dani said, “We are absolutely delighted to have Mendo back for this year’s ISL also. We are so proud to see him playing in the Brazilian league but it was always our desire to have him back during the ISL so I would like to thank Corinthians for agreeing to this loan deal. Mendo was outstanding for us last year and a big fan favourite so I am sure our passionate fans will be excited about his return. We hope to see Mendo perform even better this time and wish him all the best for the same.”
“I am very happy to have Mendoza back with us for this year’s ISL. We had been working very hard for our foreign signings and always knew that it would be difficult to find a player of Mendoza’s calibre. So the best solution was to retain Mendoza and I am thankful to Corinthians for the agreement. Mendoza was one of our best players last year but he is still only 23 and thus there is plenty of room for improvement and I have full faith in him to make a big difference for us this time also,” said Chennaiyin FC manager Marco Materazzi from Perugia, Italy.
Mendoza stated, “I am very excited to join Chennaiyin FC on loan for the second season of the ISL. It is an honour playing for Corinthians in Brazil and I have been enjoying my experience there. But I had some fantastic moments in the ISL last year so I would like to thank Chennaiyin FC and Marco for giving me the opportunity to come back. I am grateful to Corinthians for agreeing to this move and I know that this time there will be more expectations from me. It was wonderful to be at Chennaiyin FC last year both on and off the pitch so I can’t wait to get started again and especially play in front of our home fans at the Marina Arena. Last year I couldn’t play the full tournament due to injury but this time I want to remain fit throughout and help Chennaiyin become the champions.”