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ISL 2: Chennaiyin FC retain Stiven Mendoza

Chennai: Chennaiyin FC have retained Colombian forward John Stiven Mendoza Valencia for the second season of the Hero Indian Super League. The 23-year-old would be joining Chennaiyin FC on loan from Brazilian giants Corinthians to feature in the 2015 edition. Mendoza was one of the best foreign performers in the first edition of the ISL, scoring four goals in seven starts and became a popular figure among the Chennaiyin FC faithful.

Mendoza had joined Chennaiyin FC last year after the expiry of his contract at Colombian outfit Envigado and played a key role in the club finishing top of the league standings. The former Colombia youth international netted a brace in the 5-1 home victory over Mumbai City FC and also scored home and away against FC Pune City.

Unfortunately Mendoza suffered an injury in the home fixture against FC Pune City and was ruled out for the rest of the ISL. But his performances caught the attention of many big clubs in South America and he was eventually signed up by Corinthians. Mendoza was a regular member of the Corinthians squad that reached the semi-finals of the 2015 Sao Paulo state championship and had also been featuring in the Brazilian Serie A, where Corinthians are the current league leaders.

"Mendoza was one of our best players last year but he is still only 23 and thus there is plenty of room for improvement and I have full faith in him to make a big difference for us this time also," said Chennaiyin FC manager Marco Materazzi from Perugia, Italy.

Mendoza said, "I am very excited to join Chennaiyin FC on loan for the second season of the ISL. Last year I couldn't play the full tournament due to injury but this time I want to remain fit throughout and help Chennaiyin become the champions."

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