- Justin Grimm
Wunderkind Ganbayar Joins Ulaanbaatar City on Loan
Today Ulaanbaatar City FC announced the addition of 17-year-old Ganbold Ganbayar on loan from Puskas Akademia FC of Hungary for the 2018 season.
The player will earn 6,000,000 MNT per month in the deal.
Ganbayar famously joined Hungary's Puskas Akademia FC in September 2016 after tryouts in Mongolia.
He went on to make Mongolian history by winning bronze in the 2017 Puskas Cup, during which he appeared against the academies of footballing giants FC Bayern Munich and Budapest Honved.
In the latter match, Ganbayar converted his penalty attempt following regulation time to help secure the bronze medal for his club. He became the first Mongolian to win a medal in European competition by doing so.
Despite making cup appearances and playing in friendlies against notable eastern European clubs, he has yet to make a league appearance for the under-19 side. His status with the club has been unclear as, despite being with the academy for almost two years, he has not appeared on the roster or made any league appearances for the youth sides.
His lack of league play and official roster status may be due to Hungary's labor laws regarding minors and/or players from non-EU nations.
Ganbayar is scheduled to return to Hungary in October 2018, a month after his 18th birthday, at which point his roster status may become clearer.
Ganbayar made his Mongolian Premier League debut and quickly became a regular starter for Khoromkhon FC at the young age of 15 in 2015. That year, the club broke Erchim's championship stranglehold and won the league title. The team then competed in qualification for the 2016 AFC Cup with Ganbayar playing and being the youngest player in the tournament.
He has been a regular in every youth national team setup but has yet to receive a senior call-up. However, that will likely change with Mongolian hosting round 1 of EAFF Championship qualification in September 2018 and Ganbayar playing in the domestic league.
Ganbayar also has international experience with AC Milan, a highly publicized stint at Barnet FC, and reportedly attracted interest from Portugal's Académica de Coimbra.