Mumbai City FC (MCFC) on Monday announced the signing of defender Hardik Bhatt on loan from I-League club Rajasthan United until the end of the 2022-23 season.
The 25-year-old defender began his professional career with ARA FC, an I-League second-division club, before signing on for FC Bengaluru United in 2019. Showcasing his prowess as a full-back, Hardik made eight appearances, scoring twice, for the Bengaluru-based side.
Following a stint with Hyderya Kashmir FC, Hardik moved to I-League side Rajasthan United in December 2021. He established himself in the ranks of the Desert Warriors, becoming a part of Rajasthan United’s exploits in their debut I-League season in 2021-22, and became a regular fixture in their side in the ongoing league campaign.
“It’s a proud moment for me to join Mumbai City, a club from a city that I call home. It is no secret that Mumbai City are an ambitious club. I am a Mumbaikar and I know what this club means to the city of Mumbai. I am certain that I will be giving my 100% for the badge and want to help the club in my time here to achieve success. I want to thank Rajasthan United for all the support they have extended and I cannot wait to get started with this new and exciting chapter of my career,” Hardik said.
Hardik put in impressive performances at the 2022 Durand Cup as well, including featuring in the Group B fixture against the Islanders, as he helped Rajasthan United qualify for the knockout stages.
Des Buckingham, head coach, Mumbai City FC said: “It’s a pleasure to have Hardik join our talented group. We are aware of his capabilities having seen him up and close at the Durand Cup last year, but we’ve also seen his strong performances in the I-League. Hardik will bring in his qualities in our defence, particularly as a full-back, and we are confident that he can contribute greatly in what is a crucial part of the season for us in the ISL and beyond.”