The last two seasons of the Indian Super League have been disappointing for the Kerala Blasters. Having finished 9th and 7th in the 2018-19 and the 2019-20 seasons respectively, the Blasters have opted for a rebuild for the upcoming season.
The first change witnessed the appointment of Kibu Vicuna. The Spaniard was at the helm when Mohun Bagan lifted the I-League title last season and is known for his pursuit of excellence and his expansive style of play.
However, what has caught the attention of many has been player recruitment. The departure of Sandesh Jhingan left a massive void in the Kerala Blasters defensive unit. 23-year-old Nishu Kumar was the first to arrive from Bengaluru FC and became the highest-paid player in the ISL until Jhingan signed with new entrants ATK Mohun Bagan.
The overseas recruitment in particular has been outstanding. Vicente Gomez, Gary Hooper, Bakary Kone, and Costa Nhamoinesu have all played top-flight football while participating in UEFA competitions as well. In addition to this, with the likes of Rahul KP and Sahal Abdul Samad in the squad, the Blasters are expected to seal a playoff spot, at the very least.
Kerala Blasters open their ISL campaign against ATK Mohun Bagan to kick off the 2020-21 Indian Super League campaign with the match being played at the GMC Stadium in Bambolim.
Kerala Blasters FC Player List
Goalkeepers: Bilal Khan, Prabhsukhan Singh Gill, Muheet Sabir, Albino Gomes
Defenders: Costa Nhamoinesu, Abdul Hakku, Kenstar Kharshong, Lalruattharra, Sandeep Singh, Bakary Kone, Nishu Kumar, Denechandra Meiti, Jessel Carneiro
Midfielders: Vicente Gomez, Prasanth K, Seityasen Singh, Rohit Kumar, Facundo Pereyra, Givson Singh, Jeakson Singh, Nongdamba Naorem, Rahul KP, Sahal Abdul Samad, Ayush Adhikari, Sergio Cidoncha, Ritwik Das, Arjun Jayaraj, Puitea, Gotimayum Muktasana
Forwards: Gary Hooper, Jordan Murray, Shaiborlang Kharpan, Naorem Mahesh Singh