Australian midfielder Erik Paartalu has signed a two-year contract extension with Indian Super League (ISL) outfit Bengaluru FC that will see him stay with the former champions till the end of the 2021-2022 season, the club announced on Monday.
Paartalu, in his three seasons at the club, has won the league and the Super Cup, and said that Bengaluru FC's desire to compete for, and win titles played a big role in getting him to extend his stay for another two seasons.
"Bengaluru has held a special place in my heart for the past three years. Every time I leave the city, I am somehow drawn back to it, whether it's the football, the fans or the way of life. And I've decided to continue the journey for two more years at least." Paartalu said.
The 33-year-old has been a vital cog in Bengaluru's midfield, lending his physical presence on both ends of the pitch while churning out consistent performances in the middle of the park.
"On the football front, the motivation from within the club to win titles and to be the best in the country cannot be matched by any other club. My decision was an easy one, once I had time to reflect.
"The players and staff were also a big factor in continuing what's been a beautiful love story. I've made some amazing friends for life and our daily work ethic is something I hold close to me and it's what motivates me to get up each day," Paartalu said.
He played a big part in the Blues' ISL title-winning season but an unfortunate injury saw him miss the end of the competition, including the final in Mumbai.
Paartalu, however, came back stronger from injury and was one of Carles Cuadrat's go-to men through the Blues' run-up to the semifinal of the ISL last season.
Bengaluru CEO, Mandar Tamhane said the decision to hand Paartalu a new contract wasn't a tough one.
"Erik has been an important part of the BFC family over three seasons and we felt it was important that we extend his stay. He has been a thorough professional, always bringing 100 percent to the pitch whether it be training or games, and we are only glad that we will have two more seasons of him at Bengaluru."
Paartalu's extension comes after Udanta Singh signed a new three-year deal earlier this month.
Updated Date: Mar 30, 2020 14:57:33 IST