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A handy guide and report card of ISL’s transfer window


It’s the transfer season! With Indian Super League clubs looking to strengthen, or even completely revamp their squads, the Indian football transfer window promises to be an action-packed one. We bring you all the official transfers of each club and our assessment of them.

Please note we are only mentioning names made official by the respective clubs, and our assessments are based on only that.

ATK Mohun Bagan

IN: Ashique Kuruniyan, Asish Rai, Lalrinliana Hnamte

OUT: Prabir Das, Michael Soosairaj, Bidyananda Singh, Roy Krishna, David Williams

ESPN assessment (so far): 5/10

Prabir Das (who never appeared to find favour with Juan Ferrando) has been replaced with arguably a better fullback in Asish Rai. Replacing David Williams and Roy Krishna – the goalscoring heart of Antonio Habas’ champion side – will be a far tougher proposition.

As for Kuruniyan, the hope is that he doesn’t get shoehorned into the left-back role he played for years at Bengaluru FC and rather gets a run in the forward positions.

Chennaiyin FC

IN: Thomas Brdaric (COACH), Mohammed Rafique, Gurmukh Singh, Sourav Das, Jiteshwor Singh, Monotosh Chakladar, Vincy Baretto, Alexander Romario Jesuraj,

OUT: Germanpreet Singh, Jerry Lalrinzuala, Deepak Devrani, Davinder Singh

ESPN assessment (so far): 5/10

It was probably time for a reset, and the majority of signings are young and have shown good potential – but they were also made before the signing of a new coach. Which is always a cause for worry.

Kerala Blasters

IN: Bryce Miranda

OUT: Alvaro Vazquez

ESPN assessment (so far): 3/10

Miranda is a good rotation option in midfield, but replacing the goalscoring, high-pressing striker that is Vazquez will be a tough proposition.

Odisha FC

IN: Josep Gambau (COACH), Carlos Delgado, Osama Malik, Narendar Gehlot, Michael Soosairaj, Nikhil Prabhu

OUT: Javi Hernandez

ESPN assessment (so far): 7/10

Defensive reinforcements in the form of Narender, Delgado and Malik were a must for Odisha (they conceded the joint-highest goals last season – 43 goals in 20 games), but replacing the creative genius of Javi Hernandez will be harder. Soosairaj’s signing ought to be a win-win, with the winger also looking to reviltalise a promising career that stalled at ATK (and then ATKMB). Their biggest signing of the season, though, was the one they announced first – the return of coach Josep Gambau.

East Bengal

IN: Mobashir Rahman, Mohammed Rakip, Ivan Gonzalez

OUT: Franco Prjce, Sourav Das, Mohammed Rafique

ESPN assessment (so far): NA

On paper, all three signings are excellent. But how do you assess it given the larger context that surrounds the club? With Shree Cements having backed out, will East Bengal have the means (or find a sponsor) to ensure participation in the ISL next season?

FC Goa

IN: Carlos Pena (COACH)

OUT: Alexander Romario Jesuraj, Ivan Gonzalez

ESPN assessment (so far): NA

Carlos Pena’s appointment is a risky one, considering the former Goa player’s inexperience, but does give the club a chance for a fresh start after the chaos and disappointment of last season. The club have seemingly done some excellent work in the transfer market (Alvaro Vazquez is all but confirmed) but we will stave off judgement till things are official.

Bengaluru FC

IN: Simon Grayson (COACH), Prabir Das

OUT: Ashique Kuruniyan, Cleiton Silva, Sarthak Golui, Imam Basafa, Pratik Chaudhari

ESPN assessment (so far): 3/10

A squad refresh has been pending for a while now, how new coach Grayson goes about it will make for interesting watching. Prabir’s signing could prove a shrewd one, considering that he would have a point or two to prove and that Roshan Singh (the team’s starting RB) would be equally comfortable on the left. Sunil Chhetri seems to have returned to his best with India, but how Grayson builds the support around him will be crucial.

Jamshedpur FC

IN:

OUT: Mobashir Rahman, Narendar Gehlot

ESPN assessment (so far): 0/10

Where’s the new coach? The league shield holders, technically champions of India, seem rudderless at the moment. How fast they act now will determine how good their title defence will be.

Hyderabad FC

IN:

OUT: Ashish Rai

ESPN assessment (so far): 0/10

Losing Rai is a huge blow for Hyderabad. Their fullback-heavy game was heavily dependent on the skill and lungs of Akash Mishra on the left and Rai on the right. How Manolo Marquez replaces him will be key to their cup defence.

Mumbai City

IN:

OUT: Mohammed Rakip

ESPN assessment (so far): NA

We are not giving an assessment score right now because Greg Stewart is just an announcement video away from becoming a Mumbai City player and once they confirm the signing of last year’s MVP… that score will have a very different look to it.

NorthEast United

IN:

OUT:

ESPN assessment (so far): 0/10

Mum’s the word from a club that’s looking at their umpteenth rebuild. Former coach Khalid Jamil, meanwhile, has taken charge of I-League 2 side FC Bengaluru United.



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