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ISL: Prabir Das set to join Kerala Blasters

Published at :May 19, 2023 at 3:29 AM
Modified at :December 13, 2023 at 1:01 PM
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(Courtesy : ISL Media)

Sathvik Bharadwaj

The player will make a shock switch to Bengaluru FC's southern rivals.

Bengaluru FC's 29-year-old right-back Prabir Das is set to swap the blue of Bengaluru FC for the yellow of Kerala Blasters. "The Blasters will pay an undisclosed fee and the player is likely to sign a multi-year deal at the club," a source close to the development informed Khel Now.

Prabir Das joined BFC last summer in a swap deal with Ashique Kuruniyan heading to ATK Mohun Bagan. He made 20 appearances for the Blues all season. Under Simon Grayson, he mainly featured as a right wing-back in a 5-3-2, and was a key player in the club's run to the Durand Cup, Indian Super League, and Hero Super Cup finals.

Prabir's improvement in form coincided with Bengaluru FC's unbeaten run in the Indian Super League. He put in a memorable shift in the first leg of the semi-final against League Shield Winners Mumbai City FC, keeping the Islanders' potent attacking threats at bay. Grayson, however, favoured Namgyal Bhutia over Prabir in the Hero Super Cup as his first-choice right wing-back.

About the player

Prabir Das was a find from the now defunct development Pailan Arrows side and played a full I-League season. He impressed for the India U-19 football team in the 2012 AFC U-19 Championship Qualifiers. In the 2014-15 season, Prabir secured a move to I-League side Dempo. He joined Zico's FC Goa on loan and made his Indian Super League debut.

In 2015, Prabir signed a two-year contract with Mohun Bagan, and was drafted to the Delhi Dynamos. He failed to make an appearance in the 2015 ISL season, and made his India U-23 debut in the AFC U-23 Championship Qualifiers. ATK snapped up the promising player during Jose Molina's tenure in 2016, and Prabir made a telling impact in the club's run to victory.

ATK retained Prabir despite competition from other Kolkata giants on a three-year deal. He went on to make 34 appearances for ATK between 2017-2020 and 39 for ATK Mohun Bagan in the succeeding two seasons. He struck up a telepathic understanding with Fijian forward Roy Krishna, who eventually followed him to the Blues.

Kerala Blasters' season

2022-23 began as a very promising Indian Super League season filled with silky attacking football, interspersed by steely defensive resolve. Ivan Vukumamovic's side often played with a swagger and style the league has rarely seen. They finished the league season in fifth place, three points behind Bengaluru FC, and took the Blues on in a single-legged eliminator.

A hotly contested affair ended with Vukomanovic leading his side off the pitch, for which both the club and coach have faced severe reprimands. Vukomanovic was suspended for the Hero Super Cup, and the Blasters failed to make it through a tough Group A under Ishfaq Ahmed.

They ended up grabbing a 1-1 draw in a must-win final group stage game against rivals Bengaluru FC. They mutually parted ways with assistant coach Ishfaq Ahmed after the Hero Super Cup.

Right-back was a problem area for the Blasters, and Prabir's assurance in that position makes him a welcome inclusion.