Over the years, several players have made the journey from the A-League to the Indian Super League (ISL). From the likes of Tim Cahill to Dimas Delgado and Erik Paartalu, the A-League has churned out a few exceptionally talented players.
There are 10 Australian players in the current season of the ISL, the highest since the tournament's inception in 2014. A handful of these players have played and proved themselves in top-flight leagues across the world.
Let's take a look at five signings who are expected to come good this season.
1) Adam le Fondre (Mumbai City FC)
Among all the signings from the A-League, Adam le Fondre is perhaps the most prolific of the lot. The 33-year-old, who previously played for Reading in the Premier League, was the top goalscorer in the Australian top-flight, with 35 goals from 49 appearances.
Having missed out on signing Coro from FC Goa, le Fondre is an apt replacement for Mumbai City FC coach Sergio Lobera. The 33-year-old is expected to join forces with Bartholomew Ogbeche, who was the joint golden-boot winner in the ISL last season. le Fondre has a lot of expectations on his shoulders as the Mumbai-based club look towards the upcoming season.
2) Kristian Ospeth (Bengaluru FC)
Following the termination of Raphale Augusto's contract with Bengaluru FC, Carles Cuadrat had little choice but look into the A-League for a quick fix. Norwegian Kristian Opseth was eventually signed on a loan deal from Adelaide United, a place where the 30-year-old has proved himself as an adept attacking midfielder who can also play as a false number nine.
The previous season was somewhat of a disaster for Bengaluru FC as their attack failed to find the back of the net on a consistent basis. The departure of Miku also added to their woes. However, this time around, Cuadrat has a plethora of attacking options at his disposal with the likes of Cleiton Silva, Deshorn Brown, and Kristian Opseth.
3) Steven Taylor (Odisha FC)
Similar to Adam le Fondre, Steven Taylor is one of the biggest names to have signed up for the ISL this season. The 35-year-old, who spent almost a decade with Premier League side Newcastle United, has signed with Odisha FC, and will be expected to be a mainstay in central defense for the side.
Odisha FC did not have the best of seasons last year, and will be hoping that Taylor can provide the impetus the side needs to propel them to a playoff spot.
4) Gary Hooper (Kerala Blasters)
Gary Hooper is one of the very few players in this season's ISL who has played in UEFA competitions. The 32-year-old has also played in the Premier League with Norwich City, and has won the Scottish Premier League with Celtic on two occasions.
Having signed from A-League outfit Wellington Phoenix, Hooper now finds himself in somewhat of a star-studded Kerala Blasters unit. In fact, Bakary Kone, Vicente Gomez, and Facundo Pereyra have played top-flight football, with Kone and Hooper being among those who have played Champions League football as well. On paper, Kerala Blasters seemingly have the strongest outfit.
5) Bradden Inman (ATK Mohun Bagan)
Although Bradden Inman is not the biggest name on the teamsheet, the former Crystal Palace midfielder is as solid as they come. The 28-year-old was a mainstay in the Brisbane Roar squad in the 2019-20 season of the A-League, where he managed 25 appearances while scoring 4 goals.
This time around, Inman finds himself a part of the ATK Mohun Bagan setup in the ISL. He is the second Australian national in the side in addition to David Williams. Although it is unclear whether Inman can break into the first XI, the 28-year-old is certainly one to watch out for this season.Published 23 Oct 2020, 19:18 IST