ISL teams prep up for their first January transfer window
Written by: Atrayo Bhattacharya
For the first time ever, ISL witnesses a global transfer window in the initial four weeks of 2018.
The Indian Super League is gradually getting towards the business part of the tournament and all the teams will look to pull up their socks and not give their opponent an inch of breathing space. The ISL's winter transfer window opens and teams will look to fill their missing pieces and recruit the right answers for their puzzles. Some of the teams have already initiated their process and were in the queue to register their new boys.
Kerala Blasters FC have struggled to get over the line with all 3 points in 7 matches resulting in an investment in young Indian talents like Deependra Negi, Suraj Rawat, Mohammed Rakip and Hrisidharth. Deependra Negi, the former U17 India captain is a highly rated midfielder who has plied his trade at Segunda Division Spanish club CF Reus Deportiu. The 19-year-old idolises Zinedine Zidane and Philippe Coutinho.
Mohammed Rakip is another talented prospect as the lanky defender is following his father's dream to become a professional footballer. It is pretty clear that the two-time finalists are looking at the bigger picture as they secure the services of a probable future star of Indian football.
Kerala Blasters recently announced the signing of four Indian youngsters
Following their South Indian rivals, Chennaiyin FC has stepped in to grab Aman Chhetri. The 16-year old lad from Guwahati was supposed to lead the attack for India in last year's hosting of the U17 FIFA World Cup, but much to his disappointment, he was injured and was ruled out of the tournament. Aman Chhetri was picked up by Chennaiyin FC and there is a hope that the highly rated forward can be one of the brightest stars in future.
FC Pune City has also added some firepower to their backline in the form of Sahil Panwar. Sahil was the captain of the Pune Football Club and he is the son of former footballer Deepak Panwar who represented Dehradun in Santosh trophy. Sahil captained the India U18 side which participated in the SAFF U-18 championship in 2017. Young Sahil will look at this opportunity as a stepping stone in his footballing career. The Gaurs, meanwhile, have also signed Aizawl FC's powerhouse winger Lalmuankima for the rest of the season.
Speaking of transfers, one team that certainly need new recruits is NorthEast United FC. They look shabby in front of goal and their forwards have been wasteful in front of goal and they are looking to bolster their team with Helio Pinto. Pinto is a former FC Benfica youth player and has plied his trade in Spain and Cyprus, having won the Cypriot League with Apollon and APOEL Nicosia. As per sources, Pinto is currently on trial and if he impresses the NEUFC officials, he may be the replacement for Adilson Goiano who is down with a long-term injury.
According to Khel Now sources, there has been a contact between 'Fan favourite' Nicolas Velez and NorthEast United. The Argentine forward currently plies his trade at Malaysian club Negeri Sembilan FA. The 27-year old forward can be the cutting edge that North East United FC require. He may solve a lot of problems that currently manager De Deus is facing at the Guwahati based club. The negotiation is at a very crunch stage and it can still go anywhere.
Delhi Dynamos FC have a substitute for the injure Albino Gomes in the name of Xabi Irureta. Albino, who is out injured, may not feature in further proceedings and hence Irureta can take his position between the sticks. The 31-year old goalkeeper has played for Spanish clubs like Eibar and Real Zaragoza and hopefully, he will give the Lions more solidity under the bar.
We hope that clubs can tick the right boxes with their transfer activities in this winter transfer window as the ISL season will become competitive than ever and teams shall scuffle for some juicy bouts. Will the new signings make the much needed impact? We'll have to wait and see.
Published: Wed Jan 03, 2018 03:02 PM IST