ISL: FC Goa Sign 6'5'' Tall Australian Defender James Donachie as their AFC Quota Player
James Donachie is an FC Goa player. (Photo Credit: Melbourne Victory)
FC Goa announced the signing of tall Australian defender James Donachie as their final foreign signing in the ongoing transfer window for the upcoming season of the Indian Super League (ISL) on Saturday. Donachie is FC Goa's AFC quota player and should come extremely handy especially in their first-ever AFC Champions League campaign. Donachie has signed with the Goan club on a one-year loan from A-League side Newcastle Jets.
The 27-year-old Donachie stands 6 feet 5 inches tall and has played in five editions of the AFC Champions League, including the last three with Melbourne Victory. He is also a three-time A-League champion - twice with Brisbane Roar (2011-12, 2013-14) and once with Melbourne Victory in the 2017-18 season.
Donachie, who was born and raised in Brisbane, has been a recipient of Australia's Youth League Player of the Year for two consecutive seasons in 2010-11 and 2011-12. And in that very season, he made it into the Brisbane Roar team and went on to lift the A-League trophy. At Melbourne Victory, with whom he signed in 2016, he was awarded the club's Players' Player of the Season award for his performances in the 2019-20 season.
"I am thrilled to be coming to Goa and India. This should be a great opportunity and challenge for me. I will be playing for a club that's not only looking to challenge for the title but will also be playing at the highest level in Asia - the AFC Champions League. I feel this move comes at the right time for me. I can't wait to set sail to India and get on to the ground," Donachie said after signing the deal with FC Goa.
The club's Director of Football Ravi Puskur is elated with the signing and said this was the exact kind of profile he and everyone else at the club wanted this season. "James is exactly the kind of profile we wanted to bring to FC Goa this year, both for our ISL and AFC Champions League campaigns. He's entering the peak of his career, and has already won titles at the domestic level, played at a very high level in Korea and is an experienced campaigner at the continental stage," he said.
"He's coming off a campaign where he was voted the player of the year by his peers. His playing qualities will also suit our football perfectly. He's an assured presence on the ball and his aerial ability and strength will give us an added edge. We feel he'll be an ideal foil for the current Center Backs we have within the squad and I'm sure he'll slot seamlessly into our backline," he added.
Presenting our new centre-back, James Donachie!But you may call him, Don! #ForcaGoa #CallMeDon pic.twitter.com/NKyWta8kQe— FC Goa (@FCGoaOfficial) September 26, 2020
According to a Times of India report, Donachie had given a verbal agreement to FC Goa last month itself but Newcastle Jets, who signed him only earlier this year, were reluctant to let him go. However, with A-League financially suffering massively due to coronavirus, Donachie has better offers outside Australia.