I-League 2017 Team Profile: Aizawl FC
Written by: Mrunal Nakashe
The Mizoram based club return to the top flight even though they were relegated last year...
Last season’s performance: 8th
In their maiden season in the in the I-League the club from Mizoram finished in 8th spot with 16 points from the same number of games. With four wins, four draws and eight defeats, they won more hearts than they did points.
Khalid Jamil had become part of the furniture at I-League regulars Mumbai FC after being associated with the club for the best part of a decade as both player and coach.
The midfielder played for the club between 2007-09 before being appointed head coach in 2009, a position he held until last last season. However, after a disappointing campaign in which threy narrowly avoided relagation both manager and club parted company.
The experienced tactican now moves to Mizoram in search of a fresh challenge with Aizawl. This is a vital partnership for both manager and club. Jamil seeks to revitalize his career as Aizawl look to establish themselves in national football.
Mizoram based I-League outfit Aizwal FC have been heavily relying on their scouting services keeping the forthcoming I-League season, beginning later this week in mind. The Aizwal based club has signed several players with few departures, keeping the core of the squad intact.
Retained: Aizwal have retained marksman Alfred Jaryan for the upcoming I-League season. The Liberian striker has played 16 matches in the I-League till date, scoring two goals and making one assist. They have also retained homegrown talents such as Brandon Vanlalremdika and Albert Zohmingmawia for the I-League.
Transfers In: Aizwal have signed Nigerian striker Kamo Stephane Bayi, former George Telegraph. They have also signed midfielder V.Laltanpuia from their Mizoram Premier League rivals Mizoram Police FC. The Mizoram based club have also signed goalkeeper Albino Gomes from Mumbai City FC. T.Lalnunpuia was signed from Rangdajied United FC, where he had scored five I-League goals for his former club. Midfielder H. Lalmuankima signed for the Aizwal based club from MPL rivals Chanmari FC. The club also signed Eze Kingsley Obumneme, R Laldanmawia, Zohmingliana Ralte and Benjamin Eniwo Onome for the 10th edition oftheE I-League. Defender Ashutosh Mehta has also signed from the Islanders, while Jayesh Rane arrives from Chennaiyin FC to bolster the attacking options. The other foreigner is Syrian midfielder Mahmoud Al Amnah.
Transfers Out: Aizwal FC captain Ricky Lallawmawma was sold to DSK Shivajians FC.
Formation and Tactics
The Mizoram club will lineup in a conventional 4-4-2 that promises lots of goals in theory.
Gomes will be between the sticks in front of a newlook back four of Ralte, Kingsley, Lalruatthara and Lalrinzuala. The midfield is full of flair with Jayesh and Mehta providing the width either side of the central pair of Amnah and Brandon. Stephane Bayi and Jaryan lead the line.
Man to Watch: Mahmoud Al Amnah
The Syrian midfielder is undoubtedly the player to watch out for at Aizawl this season. An experienced international with 78 caps he has plenty of tricks up his sleeve and will bring creativity and flare in the middle of the park. Amnah has previous experience of Indian football too having turned out for Salgaocar. He also has 23 goals for his country.
After being relegated last season Aizawl have a second bite at the I-League cherry and it is one that they must make count. The objective will be to avoid the relegation scrap and establish themselves in a comfortable midtable position, thereby consolidating their top flight status.
Published: Fri Jan 06, 2017 06:49 PM IST