Rangers date for Chhetri, Jeje

Indian strikers to attend trials at Scottish club this month

"Sunil and Jeje will be assessed at Murray Park next week and will have every chance to impress the management team," Rangers Chief Operating Officer Ali Russell was quoted by the club's official website as saying. "Both players have excelled in the I-League and now have the chance to train with Rangers,” he added.

Rangers, who along with Celtic are the big two in Scottish football, are aggressively targeting the growing Indian market and officials from the club are expected to land in the country sometime this month.

“A Rangers delegation will visit India later this month to meet with key officials from the Indian League,” Russell said.

Chhetri has already tried his hand at foreign shores, having had a short stint with Major League Soccer club Sporting KC, formely known as Kansas City Wizards in 2010. He almost made a move to Rangers’ bitter rivals Celtic, but opted to sign for London club Queens Park Rangers in 2009. That move failed to take off after the Mohun Bagan forward was refused a work permit.

Jeje, who had a breakout season last year with Indian Arrows, is seen as one of the country’s brightest prospects. The 20-year-old had, at the start of the season, revealed his desire to play for a club in Europe.

“Sunil and Jeje are looking forward to coming to Scotland for a trial later this month,” Yogesh Joshee, Chhetri and Jeje’s agent told the club’s website.

“Both players are well aware Rangers is a far higher standard than they are used to and they will need to raise their game to impress, but they will give their all during their trial period at Murray Park,” he added.

If the players impress during the trials, Rangers could make a move for them during the January transfer window. There is an air of uncertainty about the whole deal, however, with Chhetri’s and Jeje’s current clubs Bagan and Pune FC apparently unaware of the developments.

“This is news to me because I haven’t been told anything by anyone,” Pune FC Coach Derrick Pereira told Deccan Herald.

“If it is true, it has come at an inopportune moment as the I-League season is in full flow and we will find it hard to release Jeje. He is a vital player for us and I don’t think that his leaving now will be helpful,” he added.

Mohun Bagan technical director Subrata Bhattacharya said he too was unaware of the development.

Interestingly, former Rangers man Alan Gow is now plying his trade in India with Chhetri’s rival club East Bengal.

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