Panaji: Defending champions Salgaocar, who were on the look out for replacement of injured Elijah Junior, have finally recruited French attacking mid-fielder Maxime Belouet.

The All India Football Federation (AIFF) had recently given them the permission to find a replacement.

"We have got his international clearance and the necessary registration formalities completed with the Goa Football Association as well," stated Abhijit, Salgaocar's media represented.

Salgaocar were on the look out for a direct replacement for their foreign striker, but with two Nigerians, a Ghanian and another Brazilian striker not making much of an impression on coach Karim Bencherifa, it was Maxime who eventually got the nod.

The left-footed Maxime who will be the first Frenchman to play in Indian soil, last played for Etoile FC, a French club which plays on an invitation as the foreign team in the Singapore League.

He will also play all the three matches of the Goa's Professional League which will give him good chance to settle down with the team before playing in the I-League and the AFC Cup.

"Maxime has been training with the team for quite sometime and is found to be good, will play influential role for the defending champion in the I-League where they will take on East Bengal on March 24th in the absence of Rocus Lamare and Francis Fernandes who will be playing for the Indian team in the AFC Cup," stated Abhijit.

Salgaocar, who are placed in Group 'D' of the AFC Cup along with Dhofar(Oman) and Al-Wehadat( Jordan), will play their first match in Oman on March 7th against 'Dhofar' of Oman who are the winners of "Sultan Qaboos Cup".

(Agencies)