Ahead of the auctions and the domestic draft that will follow on the 10th of July, the ISL clubs have strengthened themselves, in more ways than one. Legendary Brazilian defender and World Cup winner Roberto Carlos has been named as Delhi Dynamos’ marquee manager. While, former French striker Nicolas Anelka, who played last year for Mumbai City has now been named as their marquee player manager for the 2015 season.
Let’s take a quick look at some of the additions made by the 8 clubs of Indian Super League during the off season.
Atletico de Kolkata
Champions of the inaugural edition of the ISL, Atletico de Kolkata have not stopped strengthening the squad, and are the only club to have completed their quota of 8 foreigners, after having retained 3 players earlier. Spanish goalkeeper Juan Calatayud has been snapped up from Hungarian side, Videoton FC, while Jaime Gavilan and Tiri have strengthened the Spanish regiment inside the club. Sameehg Doutie has also been roped in, while Iain Hume who was instrumental in Kerala Blasters run to the final, also jumped in on the bandwagon.
Chennaiyin FC, Delhi Dynamos & FC Pune City
Chennaiyin FC along with FC Pune City and Delhi Dynamos have been mostly dormant during the off-season, having signed only two players each. Edel Bete and Fikru were the only two additions made by the Chennai based side.
Gouramangi Singh who played for Chennaiyin last year, was one of the two recruits by FC Pune City, with the other being Sanju Pradhan, formerly of Atletico de Kolkata.
The biggest news, however, for FC Pune City was the capture of former English International David Platt, who will coach the club for the 2015 season.
Delhi Dynamos snapped up former NorthEast United striker Seminlen Doungel and Subhasish Roy Chowdhury from Atletico de Kolkata. The announcement of Roberto Carlos as their new marquee manager, must be refreshing for the side after a dismal showing in last year’s ISL.
Brazilian legend and FC Goa chief coach, Zico has been handed a transfer kitty of 2.5 crore to be spent on domestic talent, ahead of the ISL draft, where many Indian National team players, including Sunil Chhetri and Robin Singh are available.
Spanish footballer Jofre Mateu, a part of FC Barcelona’s famous youth system La Masia, who played for Atletico de Kolkata in the inaugural ISL has been signed by the Goa club. Former Brazilian defender, Lucio, who played for a number of top European clubs including Bayer Leverkusen, has also been recruited by the club.
They have probably been one of the busiest clubs trying to rebuild their squad after a not so impressive first season. Portuguese winger Simao Sarbosa was last month revealed as their Marquee player. Former Venezuelan national team manger Cesar Farias was also announced by the club as their marquee manager for the 2015 edition of ISL. Spanish mid-fielder Bruno Arias also signed for the club, while Kerala Blasters’ French defender Cedric Hengbart was roped in to shore up the defence.
The Sachin Tendulkar owned side have been without a doubt the most inactive side in terms of player acquisition having signed only one player. The side welcomed English striker Chris Dagnall from English Football League Two side Leyton Orient.
Mumbai City FC
Mumbai City FC announced Nicolas Anelka as their new marquee player/manager, while also adding three player to their ranks. Atletico de Kolkata’s Kingshuk Debnath along with Gabriel Fernandes and Rowilson Rodrigues of FC Goa have joined the Mumbai side.
With the auctions and draft less than three days away, the teams would be looking to finalize their lineups in a bid to win this year’s Indian Super League.