Kerala Blasters FC (KBFC) have extended the contract of midfielder Sahal Abdul Samad for an additional three years. The 23-year old from Kannur will be at the club till 2025.
The attacking midfielder born in Al-Ain, the UAE, started playing football at the age of eight at the Al Ethihad Sports Academy in Abu Dhabi. After moving to India he continued playing football at the university level in Kannur. His performances earned him a spot in the Kerala U-21 and Santosh Trophy teams.
Upon signing his first professional contract he played for KBFC reserve team in the 2017-18 I-League second division. Sahal scored his first goal for the senior side against Chennaiyin FC in the 2018-19 ISL season. The fan favourite was also named the ISL Emerging Player of the Season and the AIFF Emerging Player of the Year. His excellent performances earned him a call up to the national team, first with the U-23 team in March and later made his senior national team debut in June in the 2019 King’s Cup match against Curaçao.
“Football has always been my biggest passion and commitment since childhood. From the very start of my professional career, I have really enjoyed adorning the KBFC crest and playing in front of the loudest fans. My journey with the sport has just begun and I hope to achieve greater feats for the club and for myself in the years to come. This is my state, my people and my home. I’m here to continue,” said Sahal.
“Sahal’s stay with the club is a re-affirmation of his commitment to the state of Kerala and a huge responsibility too. This state has produced a number of football legends and we are committed to be the torchbearers in developing and nurturing young local talent, thereby reinforce the legacy of Kerala towards the sport”, said Karolis Skinkys, Sporting Director, KBFC, on Sahal’s contract extension.