India international footballer Subrata Paul today signed a six-month contract as the third goalkeeper of Danish top-tier club FC Vikings in Denmark.
"I am proud and I am very, very happy. I have worked hard to achieve the contract as the first ever (to play) in European top football," Paul was quoted as saying in the club website.
"The hierarchy is clear for both goalkeeping coach Claus Fallentin and head coach Ove Pedersen. Thomas Mikkelsen is the first goalkeeper, Mads V Petersen, who is recovering from a meniscus operation comes before Paul," the club said.
"But the latter (Paul) certainly has some strengths that can be used if need be. Especially, he has extremely strong reaction but still lacks some physique."
Paul said he can learn a lot from the goalkeeping coach and first two goalkepeers.
"I am very happy to work with our goalkeeping coach Claus Fallentin. I can learn from him and the other two keepers are some super guys who have been incredibly good to me and is really helpful," said Paul.
"On the whole, the team has been mighty good to me and I am immensely happy to test myself at the highest level and to have the opportunity to improve myself further."
Director Gert Hansen said that Paul was signed up as the club felt that he would be included in the squad without weakening it. He, however, said that he would not expect Paul to play Premier League Matches in the spring.
"It's of course a signaling towards our Indian investors Anglian Holding. We have achieved the goal we set ourselves when we began our partnership, namely that we should see if we could find a strong enough squad and develop this player.
"We will in this way also try to open some doors and get some sponsorship from India. It is also part of the idea. I do not expect that Paul plays Superliga in spring; but purely sporting he may now well be with; but he is not Thomas (first goalkeeper). There is still a good piece."
Image: Subrata Paul
Photograph: Ahmed Jadallah/Reuters