Eelco Schattorie has made Spanish midfielder Mario Arques his first signing for Kerala Blasters and the club announced the arrival of the 27-year-old from Jamshedpur FC on Wednesday.
Arques was instrumental in Jamshedpur’s campaign, leading them to the verge of qualification to the playoffs.
He scored three goals and assisted twice for Cesar Ferrando’s side last season.
The Valencia born Villarreal academy product is Kerala Blasters’ third Spanish recruitment and coincidentally he is also a central midfielder like the others – Victor Pulga and Josu Currais, two fan favourites.
“I feel proud to wear the Kerala Blasters Jersey and will fight to give the team what it deserves,” Mario Arques said after completing his move to the two-time ISL finalists, who had recently appointed former NorthEast United head coach Schattorie to lead them in the sixth season of the franchise league.
The Blasters chose a ‘Super Mario’ reference to announce the signing of Arques and they would be hoping the Spaniard becomes a popular figure in this part of the world, like the famous video game.
On his aspirations, Arques said: “To know Kerala, play entertaining football for the fans and achieve victories together is something that I always wanted to do. I will put my heart here and give my best for this club.”
Schattorie, who inspired the Highlanders to their maiden semifinals last season, minced no words in explaining his choice.
“I’m very happy to have Mario Arques on board. He is a player who has proved himself very valuable for the team, during the last season of the ISL. He can play several positions, is a dynamic forward, and most of-all has a very good trait of wanting to work hard for the team. I’m looking forward to working with him.”...