Manipur's Elangbam Panthoi Chanu Creates History For India Down Under

Manipur's Elangbam Panthoi Chanu Creates History For India Down Under

Chanu became the first Indian woman to make it into the Australian Professional League

Joe WilliamsUpdated: Wednesday, March 27, 2024, 06:44 PM IST
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Elangbam Panthoi Chanu's achievement is not merely a historic breakthrough for herself, but a monumental milestone for the entire nation as she proudly assumes her position as the first-ever woman to grace the ranks of Metro United WFC in the esteemed South Australian Women’s National Premier League.

"I am absolutely thrilled and filled with gratitude to be given this opportunity to be part of such an incredible team," expressed Chanu in an exclusive interview with the Free Press Journal just moments before embarking on her journey to Sydney.

Her remarkable feat follows in the illustrious footsteps of esteemed players like Jyoti Chauhan, Kiran Pisda, and M. K. Kashmina, making her the fourth player to secure a coveted contract abroad from the pool of 27 participants in the 'Women in Sports Elite Football Trials, second edition,' a collaborative effort by Women in Sports, the AMPL Foundation, and the Football Players’ Association of India.

"I extend my heartfelt thanks to my family and all those who have contributed to my journey as a footballer," shared Chanu, a proud resident of Keirak, Thoubal, Manipur.

Chanu's exceptional goalkeeping skills were on full display during India’s recent clashes against Kosovo and Hong Kong in the Turkish Women’s Cup 2024 held in Turkey. Now, with her signing with Metro United WFC, a prominent contender in the South Australian Women’s National Premier League, she is poised to represent the team with vigour until the conclusion of the season in September 2024, as stated by the Women In Sports.

This surge in support reflects the burgeoning strength and allure of women’s football in Australia, signalling a promising future for the sport across all levels. For Panthoi Chanu, the opportunity to compete in such a prestigious league is nothing short of monumental. Her talents caught the discerning eye of Adelaide United FC during a trial attended by head coaches from esteemed teams such as Western United FC Melbourne, Perth SC, WFC Dinamo Zagreb, and Marbella FC.

Upon their glowing recommendation, Panthoi Chanu found herself embraced by Metro United WFC. This pivotal move not only bolsters her confidence but also furnishes her with a platform to showcase her abilities and garner invaluable experience on the global football stage.

"I am elated to have signed with Metro United WFC and extend my sincere gratitude to the club management and Head Coach Paul Morris for their belief in me. I am eager to perform well and bring pride to my country. It has always been my dream to challenge myself at higher levels, and I am determined to seize this opportunity to its fullest potential," she concludes, brimming with excitement for the journey ahead.

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