ATK Mohun Bagan have signed Serbian central defender Slavko Damjanovic in the winter transfer window. The 30-year-old, who is only eligible to join the club in January, will fill in for the injured Florentin Pogba in the Mariners’ starting lineup.
Damjanovic has previous Indian Super League experience, having played for Chennaiyin FC the previous season. He joins the Mariners from Novi Pazar in Serbia.
Pogba joined ATK Mohun Bagan this summer and amid high expectations, played only two Super League matches before being sidelined by injury. He appeared in six games for the Mariners. The Frenchman has returned home from India to recover from a recent surgery.
Damjanovic appeared 19 times for Chennaiyin FC in the ISL 2021-22 season. In 1666 minutes of ISL play last season, he made 40 tackles, 89 clearances, and 43 blocks. Damjanovic was a rare bright spot in a sluggish Chennaiyin defence that allowed 35 goals in 20 games. He only missed one game last season, against the Kerala Blasters.
The defender began his professional career with FK Spartak Subotica in the 2012-13 Serbian League season. Damjanovic has also played in South Africa, Uzbekistan, and Hungary. After a five-year absence in Serbia, he returned to FK TSC Backa Topola in 2020-21, making 11 appearances and scoring one goal.
Damjanovic returned to Serbia to play for his hometown club Novi Pazar in the Serbian SuperLiga, the country’s top-tier football competition. He also played a key role in Buducnost Podgorica’s fourth Montenegrin League championship in 2019-20, as well as in the team’s Europa League qualifying games.
Aside from his ISL experience, the 6.2-foot-tall defender has also competed in Europa League and AFC Champions League qualifiers. Damjanovic has only made five appearances for Pazar this season, mostly as a substitute.
After ten games, ATK Mohun Bagan sit in the ISL points table. They have 20 points and are four points behind leaders Mumbai City FC, who also have a positive goal differential.