The 8th edition of the Hero Indian Super League will kick off on 19th November 2021, 7:30 PM at the Fatorda Stadium, Goa as Kerala Blasters take on ATK Mohun Bagan. Due to COVID 19 pandemic, the league is once again set to be held under closed doors and bio bubble. Here is all you need to know about the clash!
The inaugural match between Kerala Blasters and ATK MB will be an exciting one as Kerala Blasters are glancing for a promising start to the tournament. To make things turn around this time, the Serbian coach Ivan Vukomanovic has been brought in, who is reconstructing the team. Bijoy and Sachin were promoted to the senior team based on their performance in the Kerala Premier League and pre-season games. A complete overhaul in the foreign contingent with the likes of Chencho Gyeltshen, Jorge Pereyra Diaz, Alvaro Vazquez, Adrian Luna, Enes Sipovic, and Marko Leskovic are ready to put together their contribution to the team.
NEW COACH IN TOWN:-
Ivan Vukomanovic has a vast acquaintance in the coaching field with his experience in premier divisions of Belgium, Slovakia and Cyprus, which he will be looking forward to reproducing in Kerala Blasters once again. The 44-year-old has a clear winning mentality which will help the team boost up with confidence.
PLAYERS TO WATCH OUT
Enes Sipovic from Chennaiyin FC and Marko Leskovic from Dinamo Zagreb lends more vitality to the defensive wall and Indian lad Sanjeev Stalin has performed promising at the preseason length. Chencho, Diaz and Alvaro are also worthwhile for the attacking style.
Kerala Blasters had a three-month-long pre-season and played friendlies against several teams. Likewise, Blasters tied boots in the Durand Cup which was held from August to September in Kolkata. After arriving at Goa, the team followed the mandatory COVID 19 protocols and warmed up against Odisha FC, Chennaiyin FC, and Jamshedpur FC before the ISL kick-off. Few games were also played in Kochi as part of the preseason stint.
CAPTAIN 2021 -22
Jessel Carneiro was named the new captain of Kerala Blasters. The Indian left-back was the clubs’ captain in the previous season of the Indian super league alongside two others. Jessel has had 34 appearances for the Blasters since joining the club in the 2019/20 season. The 31-year-old defender played 16 games last season and wore the captain’s armband nine times.
WHERE TO WATCH
Star Sports, Disney+ Hotstar, Jio TV, and Asianet plus.