Ahead of the upcoming season of the Indian Super League (ISL 2023-24), Mumbai City FC announced that Phurba Tempa Lachenpa has signed a three-year contract extension, keeping him with the Islanders until May 2026.
At the signing, Phurba Lachenpa said, “Mumbai City is my second family and my home away from home. This Club backed me, encouraged me and gave me the freedom to express myself. I want to continue to work hard for all the staff, the management, the fans and I want to repay the trust Des Buckingham has put in me. I’m excited to continue this journey and I hope we can bring more moments of joy for our fans and everyone associated with the Mumbai City family.”
Commenting on the Phurba signing Des Buckingham – Head Coach, Mumbai City FC said, “Phurba had a good breakout season after waiting so long for his opportunity. He is a young and talented goalkeeper who has shown his qualities in numerous games last season. He is a humble and extremely hard-working player that has progressed his overall game well in the last 12 months. I am very happy he has signed to stay with us for three more years and am excited to continue seeing his growth and development over this time.”
Phurba Tempa Lachenpa Career
Born in Sikkim, Lachenpa began his career with the youth side of Shillong Lajong, where his tenacity earned him prompt graduation to the first team. A move to Real Kashmir followed in 2019, where Lachenpa was adjudged the best goalkeeper in the I-League, before arriving at Mumbai City FC in 2020. Lachenpa made his debut for the Islanders’ in incredible circumstances – the then 23-year-old came off the bench in the 2020-21 ISL semi-final penalty shootout against FC Goa, with his heroics helping Mumbai City reach their first-ever ISL Final.
In his debut season with the Islanders, Lachenpa won the ‘double’ and went on to cement his spot in the starting XI in the following season in the ISL and at the AFC Champions League. Lachenpa featured in 5 out of 6 games at Asia’s premier club competition, keeping two clean sheets and winning the Man of the Match on one occasion in Mumbai City’s historic Champions League campaign.
Now 25, Lachenpa stood out with sensational performances in goal in the 2022-23 season, playing a crucial role in the Islanders’ record-breaking ISL League win. In his 22 appearances in the ISL, he made 64 saves, conceded only on 23 occasions and maintained 7 clean sheets – the third highest across the league.
His stunning form caught the eye of Igor Stimac and the Indian National Team as Lachenpa received his maiden call-up for the Blue Tigers in March 2023 ahead of the Tri-Nation Tournament and is touted to have a bright future ahead for club and country.