After a dismal season where they finished seventh on the points table, Kerala Blasters have already begun their preparations for the next season of ISL. The management is leaving no stone unturned to create a formidable unit for the forthcoming edition.
Not only have they retained some of their consistent performers like Bartholomew Ogbeche and Sergio Cidoncha, they have also added some fresh names to their roster like Nishu Kumar and Tiri.
But, to make way for them, they need to part ways with some promising talents. While some of the discussed names have signed a pre-contract and will turn up in new kits for the next season of ISL, negotiations are going on for the other players.
Although Kerala Blasters are doing everything to keep them onboard, only time will tell where they will end up next season. On that note, let's take a look at four players who might depart to other shores from Kerala.
#4 Halicharan Narzary
If sources are to be believed, Halicharan Narzary is set to join Hyderabad FC for the next season of ISL. The India international previously represented FC Goa and NorthEast United in the competition and even had a brief loan stint with Chennaiyin FC last season.
Narzary represented Kerala Blasters a total 22 times, scoring 2 goals and bagging 2 assists. Having started his career as a striker, he operated on the left wing for the Yellow Army during his tenure with the club. This season, Narzary took 10 shots and lodged 32 crosses for them which resulted in one goal and two assists.
Hyderabad FC finished at the bottom of the table this season and will be hungry for an upturn in fortunes under the stewardship of their new manager Albert Roca. With Halicharan joining their ranks, the latest ISL franchise can expect a better outing.
#3 Mohamad Rakip
Unfortunate to have been left out of India's FIFA U-17 World Cup squad, Mohamad Rakip gave a good account of himself last season in his 11 appearances. The right-back didn't let his guard down last season under Eelco Schattorie and increased his tally of tackles, clearances, interceptions, and blocks.
Unlike his predecessor, the Kerala Blasters' Dutch coach deployed a passing brand of football which helped Rakip improve his average number of passes and passing accuracy.
The AIFF Elite Academy graduate is only aged 19 and has plenty of time to groom himself. According to sources, he has already signed a pre-contract with Mumbai City FC and will be turning up for the Islanders next season in the ISL.
While Subhasish Bose took care of the left flank of defense, the right flank was found wanting on several occasions. Sarthak Golui tried his best in the first half of tournament. But, with him being injured in the later stages and the club loaning Souvik Chakrabarty to Hyderabad FC, Mumbai was left without a regular right back. Rakip is a good acquisition made by the club.