ISL 2020-21 CLUB PREVIEW: Will Bengaluru FC bounce back to win the title?

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If you need to look out for how to run an Indian football club, one just has to witness the structure and functioning of Bengaluru FC. The way they’ve gone about their business since their inception in 2013 is quite incredible.

But with a title at stake and disappointing performance from last season around, can the West Block Blues get to see glory this time? We take a brief look at how they stack up ahead of the new season.

Bengaluru FC Official Website Bengaluru beat J&K State FA, to face Sudeva FC  in semifinal

TRANSFERS

Bengaluru were active in the market reinforcing their attacking department, by adding centre forwards Cleiton Silva and Kristian Opseth to their ranks. They also signed on Mohun Bagan defensive supremo Fran Gonzalez, while also retaining the services of their existing well-built core group.

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They, however, released Raphael Augusto and veteran centre-back Albert Serran from their roster and even lost the services of Nishu Kumar and Nili Pedromo, who went to Kerala Blasters and APO Levadiakos respectively.

SQUAD LIST

GOALKEEPERS

  • Gurpreet Singh Sandhu
  • Lalthuammawia Ralte
  • Lara Sharma

DEFENDERS

  • Ajith Kumar
  • Biswa Darjee
  • Francisco Gonzalez
  • Joe Zoherliana
  • Juanan
  • Namgyal Bhutia
  • Parag Srinivas
  • Pratik Chaudhuri
  • Rahul Bheke
  • Wungngayam Muirang

MIDFIELDERS

  • Erik Partaalu
  • Ajay Chhetri
  • Amay Morajkar
  • Cleiton Silva
  • Dimas Delgado
  • Harmanjot Khabra
  • Suresh Wangjam
  • Thoi Singh
  • Emanuel

FORWARDS

  • Sunil Chhetri
  • Udanta Singh
  • Deshorn Brown
  • Kristian Opseth
  • Edmund Lalrinidika
  • Ashique Kuruniyan
  • Naorem Singh
  • Semboi Haokip
  • Leon Augustin

STRENGTH

For the last few seasons now, Bengaluru have been defensively resilient not conceding a lot of goals which is the foundation for any title challenge. That manager Carles Cuadrat also boasts a good unbeaten record overall, which will be important for the team to gather momentum going into the business end of the tournament.

WEAKNESS 

Very surprisingly, BFC dropped off in their efforts to score goals and play free-flowing attacking football. Whether they were chances missed or unable to create in the first place, they only scored 22 goals in 18 ISL games last campaign. But they will hope that with the additions of Opseth and Silva, the team can supply more chances and goals upfront.

KEY PLAYER

ISL 2018-19: Sunil Chhetri says Bengaluru FC never panicked - Sportstar
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Is there any name more important than Indian national team captain and icon, Sunil Chhetri? At the crisp age of 37, he is a superstar who transcends the game on his own with passion and skill. Being a versatile forward, he will once again look to provide impetus in attack after a decent 2019/20 season that saw him score 9 goals in 17 ISL appearances.

PREDICTED TABLE FINISH

2nd Place – Bengaluru have all the credentials to lift the title this time but need to be wary of the challenge posed by defending champions ATK Mohun Bagan. 

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Bhargav Gopal
The quintessential football aficionado who knows a thing or two about Economics. One can often find me reading detective novels with coffee when I am away from the sports world.

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