Manipur football star Bala Devi, who recently became the first Indian woman to be signed up to play professional football, was seen off on Monday by CM N Biren Singh, along with a sum of Rs 50,000 as a token of the Government's appreciation.
The Manipur Chief Minister, uploading pictures of the football star's farewell ceremony at his office, captioned it, "Bala Devi the queen of Indian Football and pride of Manipur leaving for Scotland to join her new team RANGER WFC .I handed over her the state home department’s clearance letter with blessings along with a sum of Rs 50 thousand only."
It may be mentioned here that Devi, one of the strongest forces in Indian football, was recently signed by Scottish club Rangers FC.
She will join the club on an 18-month deal after a successful spell on trial at Rangers in November this year. This implies, Bala will become the first Indian woman to become a professional footballer anywhere in the world and she will also become Rangers’ first Asian international footballer.
The 29-year-old footballer from Manipur is the current top scorer for the Indian national women’s team, netting an impressive 52 times in 58 games since 2010 making her the top international goal scorer in the South Asian region.
Bala started her football career at the age of fifteen and also served as a national team captain in a distinguished international career.
She has a prolific record at the domestic level with over 100 goals in 120 games. She has also been named as All India Football Federation (AIFF) Women’s Player of the Year twice, in 2015 and 2016.
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