Melbourne City FC's Luke Brattan may have been signed by top English teams like Manchester City or Bolton Wanderers previously, but the defensive midfielder has become a Kerala Blasters fan over the last few years, after watching the passionate support the club attracts.
Brattan has been so impressed by the Blasters supporters, that he claims that he himself wants to join the famous "Yellow Army".
"I'm very excited to play in India. It's a beautiful country with beautiful people. I heard that the fans are very loud and very loyal here (in Kochi)," Brattan said to Sportskeeda.
"Playing against the Blasters should be a very good experience. The fans are quite loud, I've heard. Seeing them, I think I want to be a part of the Yellow Army."
The 28-year-old further went on to praise Kerala Blasters boss David James saying that the Indian Super League needs more top footballing names like him to rise up the ladder.
"The Blasters are my favourite team from the ISL, there's no doubt about it. David James is a good manager, and he's concentrating on playing good football," he said. "It's great for the club and for the league to have someone like him."
The ISL has a number of Australians have been successful in the ISL so far, and Brattan has been closely following the progress made by his close friend Erik Paartalu, who plays for Bengaluru FC.
"I watch a couple of ISL games every week. Erik Paartalu is a good friend, and he's obviously told me a lot about playing in India," said Brattan. "He said that the league has a huge potential, and one day it will go on to attract some world-class players."
The Girona test
Melbourne City FC may be one of the top teams on the Asian circuit, but it is always a great opportunity when one of the better-performing teams from Europe come knocking.
Girona have had a fruitful La Liga campaign, finishing on the top half of the Spanish top-tier league, and that is something that makes them one of the strongest teams in this three-way tournament. What makes them even more formidable in the eyes of teams like Melbourne or Kerala Blasters is the fact that they have beaten top sides like Real Madrid during the season.
"They (Girona) are a really good side. They've done well in the La Liga last season, they have beaten teams like Real Madrid," said Brattan. "Playing against them would give us a good indication of where we are, in the world. The same goes for the Kerala Blasters. It'll be a good challenge, especially with so much humidity here."Published 24 Jul 2018, 17:31 IST