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ISL Media

ISL clubs battle for players as Indian transfer market hots up

Written by: Ali Shibil Roshan

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The is to make things better in the next ISL and teams are vying to poach players.

The Indian Super League (ISL) this season has not been the one  four years before. In the meantime, there have seen a lot of changes happen everywhere. From a mere cash-rich league which heavily banked on the glitz and glamour of world football stars and the celebrities - coming to become an AFC recognized league, it has grown bigger.

Investing in the league and watching the team perform deplorably is not a good way to enjoy and many franchise owners and team management have witnessed it this season. Despite entering the campaign with a lot of expectations, teams like Kerala Blasters, Mumbai City FC and many others failed to live up to the hopes.

Unsurprisingly, teams have now turned their focus to building a compatible squad for the upcoming seasons, at least this is what we can understand from the flurry of transfer news we're getting to hear.

Milan Singh has been one of the pillars of Kerala Blasters midfield this season

Mumbai, who failed to make a cut into the top six have now bolstered their midfield with the inclusion of Kerala Blasters midfielder, Milan Singh, sources close to the player has revealed to Khel Now. Milan played an integral part in the Blasters' midfield this season but Mumbai were well-prepared to take in the former Delhi Dynamos man. The Islanders are also close to coming to terms with versatile defender Souvik Chakrabarti from Jamshedpur FC, Sena Ralte from Delhi Dynamos, young sensation Bipin Singh from ATK and Subhasish Bose from Bengaluru.

Bose has had a brilliant season for Bengaluru FC. The former Mohun Bagan defender improved on a massive scale this season and has been vital in securing the Bengaluru defence. With Mumbai vying to sign him and the Blues striving to retain him, it's going to be a big battle.

Souvik Chakrabarti had a good season with debutants Jamshedpur FC. Chakrabarti, who was firm and tenacious for the Dynamos in the third edition displayed a similar performance for the Men of Steel this season. His team have been able to record seven clean-sheets, courtesy of a solid defensive unit. If the deal goes through, Mumbai will undoubtedly solidify their vulnerable defence.

Jackichand has decided to switch sides to FC Goa

Similarly, FC Goa have secured the services of Indian international Jackichand Singh in a whopping deal, that will let him earn a sum near INR ₹2Cr for two seasons. Akin to that of his teammate Milan, Jackichand also employed a moderate performance for the Southerners this season.

With many players leaving the club, the Blasters are in a position of  debacle and to fill the void, the team is in talks with several Indian players and they've agreed terms with Seiminlen Doungel sources have confirmed.


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Meanwhile, Delhi themselves had a disappointing start to the campaign this season. The team failed to replicate their previous year's performance and was in the bottom three for almost the entire season. However, there was a big improvement in their form in the second half of the season as the team rejuvenated from the ashes and stayed unbeaten in their final six games. To make things even better, they are in advanced talks with Narayan Das to strengthen their defence, which has been their achilles heel this season.

Elsewhere, defending Champions ATK also had a season to forget this time around. In spite of having the likes of Robbie Keane and many other famed players, the team failed to replicate their previous season's performance. Also, the team sacked Englishman Teddy Sheringham and appointed his compatriot Ashley Westwood as the interim coach. But, the move failed to produce results as the former Bengaluru FC gaffer failed to help the team turn things around. To restore their old but glorious times, ATK are striving to poach talented players to buttress the team and with that in mind FC Goa player Pronay Halder and Mohun Bagan defender Ricky Lallawmawma have agreed to join the them. 

Nevertheless, all these players are under contract with their current clubs, at least until May 31 and it's uncertain whether some of these transfer sagas will come to fruition. The participation of these players in the upcoming Super Cup remains a big question, as no official confirmation has been made on the issue. Also, there is a chance for these players to continue their stints with current clubs until next season.

Published: Tue Mar 06, 2018 10:58 AM IST

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