NorthEast United FC rope in Spanish forward Nestor Albiach | ISL 2023-24

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NorthEast United FC (NEUFC) have acquired the services of Spanish forward Nestor Albiach. The 30-year-old is the Highlanders’ third overseas signing and seventh addition ahead of the 2023-24 season.

Albiach started his career with La Liga club Levante UD but made his professional debut with SC Requena in the Spanish third tier. After spending a season with the club, he moved to Segunda division club CD Olimpic de Xativa.

Overall, he made 59 appearances in Spain, scoring 12 goals, before moving to Czech Republic side Dukla Prague. Albiach rose to prominence with the club and was elected as the best foreigner in the league in his first season.

Subsequently, Albiach joined 13-time Czech champions Sparta Prague in 2016. However, he faced limited game-time, making just 10 appearances during his three-year spell.

After six years in the Czech Republic, he returned to Spain, playing for CF Badalona in the third division, and later joined Rayo Majadahonda, where he scored nine goals and provided four assists last season.

Albiach brings a wealth of European experience to NorthEast United FC. He attributed the club’s ambitions as the driving force behind his decision to make the move to India. Speaking to the NEUFC media after completing his move, the Spaniard said:

“I am thrilled and happy with the opportunity to play in India and in the Hero ISL. Joining NorthEast United FC is a significant responsibility, and I made this decision because of the trust they placed in me and the ambitious nature project of the project currently underway.”

Nestor’s arrival will mark the replacement of the departing Wilmar Jordan Gil, as he will look to bolster NorthEast United’s attack.

“Nestor is a very special player” – NorthEast United FC head coach Juan Pedro Benali on Nestor Albiach

Albiach, a versatile and physical forward, has the ability to excel in various positions across the frontline. Head coach Juan Benali is confident that Albiach’s experience and leadership qualities will not only benefit the young players at the club but also add significant firepower to the team’s attack.

“Nestor is a very special player with the ability to feature across the attacking line, “said Benali. “His presence will infuse our young team with quality and experience. As a seasoned player, he will also serve as a mentor and guide our talented youngsters towards achieving our collective objectives.”

Albiach will compete with Ibson Melo for a spot in the number nine position, but his ability to play as a support striker or as an attacking midfielder will be of immense value to the team.

The 30-year-old’s clever movement inside the box, along with his impressive ball-striking ability, make him a valuable asset. Overall, he is expected to complement the other forwards effectively and contribute significantly in the upcoming season.

Edited by Sudeshna Banerjee

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