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Dagnall rejects new O’s contract for India move

PUBLISHED: 10:40 10 June 2015 | UPDATED: 11:01 10 June 2015

Chris Dagnall wheels off in celebration after netting against Preston North End this season for Leyton Orient (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Chris Dagnall wheels off in celebration after netting against Preston North End this season for Leyton Orient (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Simon O'Connor Photography

Forward has signed up for Indian Super League 2015 season

Chris Dagnall celebrates after scoring the equaliser against Preston North End this season for Leyton Orient (pic: Simon O'Connor).Chris Dagnall celebrates after scoring the equaliser against Preston North End this season for Leyton Orient (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Chris Dagnall has rejected a new contract with Leyton Orient to join Indian Super League outfit Kerala Blasters, the club have confirmed.

The 29-year-old was one of 12 players not offered a new deal at the end of the season but once Ian Hendon was appointed as head coach, he made it clear he wanted to keep the forward at Brisbane Road.

However the Scouser has decided to venture outside of England for the first time in his career and sign up to play in India where he will compete against former team mate Iain Hume.

Hume and Dagnall played together at Tranmere Rovers and it is believed the Canadian has played a part in getting the former O’s forward out to India to sign for Kerala Blasters, who are managed by former England under-21 boss Peter Taylor.

Chris Dagnall had his penalty saved at Wembley to confirm Rotherham would win promotion to the Championship instead of the O's (pic: Simon O'Connor).Chris Dagnall had his penalty saved at Wembley to confirm Rotherham would win promotion to the Championship instead of the O's (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Dagnall departs Brisbane Road following an 18-month spell in E10 having found the net 20 times for the O’s. After signing for Orient as a free agent on January 16 last year, he scored twice on his debut at Crewe Alexandra.

He went add five more goals during the remainder of the campaign – including netting in the 2-1 play-off semi-final triumph against Peterborough United at Brisbane Road.

Unfortunately, however, the forward missed a penalty in the 4-3 shoot-out defeat to Rotherham United in the play-off final at Wembley.

Dagnall got over his disappointment, though, and netted a brace against Peterborough in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy in September to get his season up and running.

Leyton Orient's Mathieu Baudry consoles Chris Dagnall after his penalty shoot-out miss at Wembley last year (pic: Simon O'Connor).Leyton Orient's Mathieu Baudry consoles Chris Dagnall after his penalty shoot-out miss at Wembley last year (pic: Simon O'Connor).

The former Rochdale and Scunthorpe ace would go on to score 11 more times for O’s but he was unable to prevent them suffering relegation to League Two.

He endured a tough end to the campaign, looking extremely tired and going 10 games without a goal, but his effort was always commended by Orient supporters.

On leaving the club, the forward admitted he thoroughly enjoyed his time at Brisbane Road club.

“I have enjoyed my 18 months with the club and I have some great memories over the course of that period,” Dagnall told the official club website.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the fans for the support they have given to me and the club during my time here. They were very welcoming from the minute I joined and I can only thank them for that.

“This will be a new challenge for me over in India and a completely new environment, country and culture, but one I look forward to.”

Dagnall’s season with Kerala Blasters will start in September and finish in December therefore a January move back to England could be on the cards, but for the time being Orient will need to replace his firepower.


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