Mumbai City FC were the the talk of the town during the summer transfer window this season. The Islanders have cashed in big to build up an ‘extra ordinary’ squad ahead of the seventh season of the Indian Super League.
The City Football Group (CFG) owned outfit has undergone a complete revamp. With a Head Coach who has proved his name on board, the islanders will be looking to make the most out of their heavy investments.
Last Season’s Performance :
After a dream run to the playoffs under Portuguese Head Coach Jorge Costa in the 2018-19 season, the islanders closely missed out on a consecutive play off appearance last season. Mumbai City FC finished 5th in the table courtesy of a late winner against them by their former skipper Lucian Goain who sealed the deal for Chennaiyin FC.
Transfer Window dealings :
The CFG owned outfit got everyone talking due to their activeness in the transfer market. Sergio Lobera has been named as the new head coach and he has put up a great squad altogether.
The Spaniard has brought in some of the big names in Indian Football. Hugo Boumous made a big money move to Mumbai City FC to link up with Lobera. Mandar Rao Desai, Ahmed Jahouh and Senegalese defender Mourtada Fall have also switched colours and have joined their former coach. The Islanders have roped in Northeast United FC’s and Kerala Blasters FC’s all time highest goal scorer Bartholomew Ogbeche and English forward Adam le Fondre joins their elite list of forwards for the upcoming season.
To add more maturity to their Indian contingent they have roped in local lad Farukh Choudhary and Vikram Pratap Singh to bolster their attack. At the back, Mehtab Singh, Mahamad Rakip, Tondonba Singh and Amey Ranawade have been brought in to look after the defensive duties. Phurba Lachenpa will be the second choice keeper behind Indian international Amrinder Singh.
Indian International Subhasish Bose has joined his home club ATK Mohun Bagan and Pratik Choudhari has signed for the Blues of Bengaluru. Diego Carlos, Paulo Machado, Amine Chermiti, Mohammed Larbi, Mato Grgic, Modou Sougou have all parted ways with the club. Anwar Ali Jr. and Mohammed Rafique have been released too.
The kind of additions they have made, the look deadly on paper. Their major strength will ofcourse be their star strikers. Adam Le fondre had a great season in Australia’s top flight and will be looking to make his name in the ISL. On the other hand, Bartholomew Ogbeche has already taken the ISL by storm. With the addition of two quality wingers namely Farukh Choudhary and Vikram Pratap Singh, Lobera’s army looks too good in attack.
If Attack is Mumbai’s strength then their defense can be their weak point. They just have one overseas defender in the form of Mourtada Fall and given the increase in the quality of strikers other teams have brought in, it can be something for Sergio Lobera to worry about. The likes of Golui, Amey Ranawade and Mehtab Singh will be expected to link up with fall to look after the backline.
Players to watch out for :
Adam le Fondre :
The Englishman was phenomenal in the A-League last season. He scored 39 goals in 57 matches for Australian outfit Sydney FC. Ferran Corominas was a major reason of Lobera’s success at Goa and Sergio Lobera will hope that Le Fondre lives up to the expectations.
The French – Moroccan attacker displayed what he is capable of last season with the Gaurs. He won the Golden Ball and that’s a big reason why City Football Group made a huge investment in bringing Hugo to Mumbai. Hugo will surely be a player everyone will have their eyes on.
Goalkeepers: Amrinder Singh, Nishit Shetty, Phurba Lachenpa, Vikram Singh
Defenders: Amey Ranawade, Valpuia, Mandar Rao Dessai, Mehtab Singh, Sarthak Golui, Mourtada Fall, Mohamad Rakip and Tondonba Singh.
Midfielders: Ahmed Jahouh, Farukh Choudhary, Hernan Santana, Hugo Boumous, Asif Khan, Pranjal Bhumij, Raynier Fernandes, Rowllin Borges, Sourav Das, Vignesh Dakshinamurthy, Vikram Partap Singh, Bidyananda Singh, Bipin Singh, Cy Goddard.
Forwards: Bartholomew Ogbeche, Adam le Fondre
Mumbai City FC kickoff their season against Northeast United FC on November 21.