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PUBG Mobile, Free Fire nominated as eSports Game of the Year

The eSports awards is an award ceremony that is held every year.

It highlights/showcases the best personalities, teams and games of that particular year. Esports, especially in the mobile gaming industry, has seen a huge growth in the past few years and is still growing day by day.

It’s five categories in 2021:


This year the eSports Awards has five categories :-

  • eSports Apparel of the Year
  • eSports Content Creator of the Year
  • eSports Mobile Game of the Year presented by Verizon
  • eSports Personality of the Year
  • eSports Streamer of the Year

eSports Mobile Game of the Year:

The eSports Mobile Game of the Year category was introduced in 2020. This year players are thrilled to find that two of the their most favourite battle royale games. PUBG Mobile and Free Fire, are in the list of nominations.

PUBG Mobile:

Pubg Mobile esports


PUBG MOBILE is a Battle Royale mobile game created independently by Lightspeed & Quantum Studios of Tencent Game, officially licensed by PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS. It was released globally in March 2018. Built with Unreal Engine 4, PUBG MOBILE focuses on visual quality, maps, shooting experience, and other aspects. It provides an all-rounded surreal Battle Royale experience to players.

Free Fire:


Garena Free Fire is a battle royale game, developed by 111 Dots Studio and published by Garena for Android and iOS. It became the most downloaded mobile game globally in 2019. The game received the award for the “Best Popular Vote Game” by the Google Play Store in 2019. As of May 2020, Free Fire has set a record with over 80 million daily active users globally.

Both the mobile games are immensely popular with a large audience worldwide that spread to over a million.

Revenue generated by both the games:


PUBG Mobile gathered around $2.7 billion from player spending in 2020 with revenue touching as high as $300 million in March. According to Sensor Tower reports, PUBG Mobile maintained it’s position as the second highest earning mobile game worldwide for the month of April 2021, raking in $237.7 million.

Free Fire had generated approximately around $100 million in revenue in the last quarter of 2020. And as per the Sensor Tower in the first quarter of 2021. Free Fire surpassed PUBG Mobile as the highest earning battle royale game in the United States of America. Free Fire generated a total revenue of $100 million in the first quarter of 2021. This is a jump of 4.5 percent from what it generated in the first quarter of 2020.

Nominations:


The battle between Free Fire and PUBG Mobile continues to heat up in the eSports Awards 2021 nominations. Both games are immensely popular with millions of players worldwide. These two games surely brewing up a great head-to-head fight giving the other game absolutely no chance to snatch the award. Also, another report from the Sensor Tower, showed that Free Fire overtook PUBG Mobile as the top battle royale mobile game in the United States of America due to the players spending in the first quarter of the year 2021.

Other games:


Apart from PUBG Mobile and Free Fire, Call of Duty : Mobile is also nominated for the same category at the eSports Awards 2021. Other games that are selected in the eSports Mobile Game of the Year category are:

Clash Royale
League of Legends: Wild Rift
Mobile Legends: Bang Bang
Arena of Valor
Brawl Stars

Odisha FC race ahead to sign Federico Gallego

According to reports, Odisha FC is keen to sign Uruguayan lynchpin Federico Gallego who is now a free agent after playing multiple seasons for Northeast United FC.

The Kalinga warriors had a season to forget as they finished last on the points table with just 12 points from 20 matches. But, now they are scripting a fightback and have taken David Villa on board.

The World Cup winner join Odisha to lead the global football operations of the club and alongside him, the club has also brought back Spanish tactician Joseph Gambau in their backroom staff.

Gambau and a rumoured former Villarreal coach who is expected to join Odisha have suggested the signing of Gallego. “Joseph Gambau and the rumoured former Villarreal coach have recommended Gallego’s name to the management” a source who has been tracking the development told Sportskindle.

Federico Gallego was the driving force behind Northeast United’s run to the semis. He finished the season with 10 goal contributions, the most in Northeast United’s camp. Gallego’s game reading skills and his quick-to-react nature is what makes him a lot more special.

Although, the signature of Gallego is not going to be a piece of cake as long as Northeast United FC is in the race.

Is Shroud the father of aiming in the Gaming Industry?

Shroud, a.k.a Michael Grzesiek, is a 26 years old Canadian streamer, YouTuber and former professional Counter-Strike : Global Offensive player.

He is known for playing first-person shooter and battle royale games such as Counter-Strike : Global Offensive, PUBG, Apex Legends, Valorant and many more.

Shroud’s Playstyle

Shroud is often recognised as one of the best aimers. As he says that the fact that he is known for his aim is wrong. He goes on by saying that he is not known for his aim but for his ability to adapt to any game which eventually enhances his aim naturally. Key points to notice in his gameplay are his confidence in himself, precision, accuracy, game sense and mindset. He is so confident with his gameplay that he dominates in almost every game he plays. His precision and accuracy are absolutely heavenly.

Due to his immense experience in this field, he knows exactly where to place his crosshair and start shooting. He knows to tag his enemy well firstly then after confirming, finishing them off quickly as soon as possible. As seen in his gameplay, he doesn’t give much time to his enemies to hit him. He is lightning quick in his distribution and finishes off his enemies real quick. As for game sense, it is a thing which comes with experience of playing a specific game for a long time. Same happened with Shroud as well. But his adaptability is visibly far greater than what normal players have. His adaptability combined with his knowledge of the game brings havoc in the opposition’s heart. He has a fine knowledge about every game he plays, it’s mechanisms etc.

While playing any game, Shroud starts with the base or default sensitivity then gradually sets it up to his own comfort. His mindset while playing any game is pretty quiet types. While playing any game very seriously he doesn’t show much of any expressions and has a high level of concentration which helps him to plan out his next move really quickly. His mindset is one of the reasons of his fast actions. His setup is also one the of the reasons of his overpowered playstyle. His gear mainly contains products of Logitech.

He also mentioned once in one his streams that his one of the most favourite mice he used was the Logitech G9. However, he once said that better hardware doesn’t make one a better gamer. It just makes the path of being a better gamer much easier. Otherwise the main factor is one’s skills.

Shroud’s Pro Career

Shroud didn’t had much of a “pro” career in his life in any of the games he played except for Counter-Strike : Global Offensive. But his reign in that field too was quite short. He started his career with several ESEA teams, particularly Exertus eSports and Manajuma. He was then signed by compLexity Gaming as a stand-in. Then in August 2014 he was signed by Cloud9 who acquired the roster of compLexity Gaming.

Shroud playing for Cloud9

In 2016, he along with his team at Cloud9, finished at first-place in ESL Pro League Season 4 and a second-place in ESL One Cologne 2017. On August 16, 2017 it was announced that he and his long time teammate Jordan “n0thing” Gilbert would be stepping down from the active roster of Cloud9. On April 18, 2018 Shroud left Cloud9 and retired from professional Counter-Strike Global Offensive. After Counter-Strike Global Offensive he didn’t attempt to start another pro career in any of the games he played after Counter-Strike Global Offensive.

Shroud as a Content Creator

Since the transitioning from professional Counter-Strike Global Offensive to streaming on Twitch, Shroud has maintained a diverse set of games. As of March 2021, he has streamed for over 9,100 hours on the platform, and has acquired over 455 million total views. On March 10, 2019, he reached 100,000 Twitch subscribers—and gained another 14,000 the next day—making his subscriber count more than double the runner up streamer at the time: Timothy “TimTheTatman” Betar. He continued to stream full-time on Twitch until October 2019. On October 24, 2019, Grzesiek officially announced his move from Twitch to Mixer and would be broadcasting exclusively on Microsoft’s streaming platform, following the steps of fellow streamer Tyler “Ninja” Blevins, who announced a similar deal earlier that year.

On June 22, 2020, Microsoft announced that it would be shutting down Mixer and instead partner with Facebook Gaming. It was alleged that Grzesiek received an offer from Facebook that would have financially exceeded that of Mixer. Grzesiek has since declined the offer, and received the remainder of the current contract payout. On August 11, 2020, Grzesiek announced that he would return to stream exclusively on Twitch. His first stream back the following day peaked at over 510,000 plus concurrent viewers.

Shroud’s Achievements

2017 : The Game Awards Trending Gamer (Nominated)

2019 : Esports Awards Streamer of the Year (Nominated)

2019 : The Game Awards Content Creator of the Year (Won)

2020 : 10th Streamy Awards Live Streamer (Nominated)

Hey Readers don’t forget to Follow us on Facebook , Instagram and Twitter and comment below who is your favourite Gamer.

Kohli, Rohit in Grade A+ category as BCCI release the Retainership list for 2020-21

In-between the on-going season of Vivo Indian Premier League 2021, Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has announced the Annual Player Retainership list of 2020-21 for the period from September 2020 to October 2021.

In the list announced, some of the players got upgraded to one level higher while, some of them even got demoted to two levels down.

Like last time, captain Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah have remained in the Grade A+ category this time as well.

The Payment structures for the Retainership list 2020-21 are as follows:

Grade A+: INR 7 Cr

Grade A: INR 5 Cr

Grade B: INR 3 Cr

Grade C: INR 1 Cr

The name of the players retained under each category are:

Grade A+: Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah.

Grade A: Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma, Rishabh Pant, Hardik Pandya.

Grade B: Wriddhiman Saha, Umesh Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shardul Thakur, Mayank Aggarwal.

Grade C: Kuldeep Yadav, Navdeep Sahni, Deepak Chahar, Shubhman Gill, Hanuma Vihari, Akshar Patel, Shreyas Iyer, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Singh Chahal, Mohammed Siraj.

“The author of this article has crafted it for you. Boost his confidence by letting us know your feedback in the comments below!”

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These two players can become the key aspect of India in the ODI series against England

Every winning move by them for their team will be an answer to those who questioned their calibre in One-Day Internationals.

Here we present the two players who can become the X-factor for India in the ODI series against England alongside the star players of the team like Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli.

Bhuvaneshwar Kumar:

Undoubtedly, Bhuvi is such a name whose jaw-dropping comeback in the T20I series against England has made each and every cricket fan across the country go gaga over it. His swing is his brahmāstra and in ODIs, if India chooses to bowl first then definitely, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar will be a serious threat to the English batting side as due to the absence of dew in sunlight, the World Champions will have to face some crazy swing bowling which may result in the lose of wickets for them.

Shreyas Iyer:

One of the best young batting prospects, Shreyas Iyer will also be a key-man in India’s batting lineup and also, Shreyas will have to face a tough test. With so many batting options available in the Indian squad including some new names like Ishan Kishan and Suryakumar Yadav who have performed really well recently, Shreyas’ test will be prove his superiority in order to have a fixed place in the team during India’s future tours.

Other than these two, India’s chinaman specialist, Kuldeep Yadav will be also serving as a key prospect and as captain Virat Kohli had said during the press-meet earlier today, Kuldeep is expected to play all three matches and his left-arm orthodox spin can be threatening to the English batting during the middle overs as the track is also expected to be spin favourable.

With the inclusion of Krunal Pandya and Prasidh Krishna in the ODI squad after their exemplary performance in the Indian domestic cricket, it is gonna be really tough for Virat Kohli to go for rotations in the starting XI as Washington Sundar and Mohammed Siraj will be on the verge of comprising with their place in the team.

“The author of this article has crafted it for you. Boost his confidence by letting us know your feedback in the comments below!”

Best DUELIST as FRAGGER in VALORANT – RAZE

//BIOGRAPHY

Raze explodes out of Brazil together with her massive temperament and large guns. With her blunt-force-trauma play-style, she excels at flushing entrenched enemies and clearing tight areas with a generous dose of “boom.”

//SPECIAL ABILITIES

Q – BLAST PACK

INSTANTLY throw a Blast Pack which will stick to surfaces. RE-USE the ability after deployment to detonate, damaging and moving anything hit. Raze isn’t damaged by this ability, but will still take fall damage if launched up far enough.

E – PAINT SHELLS

EQUIP a cluster bomb. Fire to throw the bomb, that will harm and creates sub-munitions, every doing harm to anyone in its range.

C – BOOM BOT

Equip a Boom bot. Fire can deploy the bot, that will travel in a straight line, bouncing off walls, searching for enemies. The Boom bot can lock on to any enemies in its frontal cone and chase them, exploding for serious damage if it reaches them.

X – SHOWSTOPPER

Equip a rocket launcher. Fire shoots a rocket that will do fatal damage on contact with something.

Raze showstopper

England dominate Day 1 as Ruthless Root scores a majestic ton


India and England locked horns against each other in the 1st test at the iconic M.A.Chidambaram stadium , Chennai in an all important test series as both teams are aiming a spot in the final of the World Test Championship final.


After winning the toss , England opted to bat first on a belter of a wicket at Chepauk which the experts thought to be helpful for the spinners as the game progresses which justified India’s decision to play three frontline spinners. Rory Burns and Dom Sibley who are playing their first match in India , opened the innings for the visitors and cautiously negotiated the new ball threat of Jasprit Bumrah and comeback man Ishant Sharma. Both these bowlers tested the English opening pair and did not concede any freebies in the first hour of Day 1. Both the batsmen played calmly against the Indian Spinners and played some risk free strokes.

Just in when both the English batsmen were looking in complete control and it seemed that England would go into Lunch without losing a wicket , Rory Burns departed for 33 to R.Ashwin trying to play a reverse sweep which was not needed at all at that time . He seemed disappointed as he missed out an opportunity by playing a false short . In the very next over Bumrah trapped young D.Lawrence Lbw for a duck . It was a good delivery from the pacer which nipped back and the D.Lawrence had no answer for that . Just at the stroke of lunch , England lost 2 quick wickets and allowed India to come back in the match . England went onto lunch at 67/2 with D.Sibley and J.Root not out.

https://www.facebook.com/190313434323691/posts/3933770199977977/


Post lunch, J.Root who was in terrific form and was playing his 100th test match and D.Sibley joined hands together to get a mammoth 200-run partnership for the 3rd wicket . England didn’t lose a single wicket in 2nd session as J.Root played swept the spinners and used his feet to play some classy strokes and Sibley played a calm and patient innings at the other end . India who are being considered as favourites from the start of the series had no answers as to how to break this partnership. There were questions being raised at the selection of the Indian team’s playing 11 for leaving out Chinaman , Kuldeep Yadav. Everyone was shocked at the exclusion of Kuldeep as being a wrist spinner, the wicket would have definitely helped him as the other finger spinners were finding it difficult to spin the ball.

https://www.facebook.com/190313434323691/posts/3933740589980938/


Root scored a superb 100 in his 100th test match which was a big milestone in his career . He was well supported by a patient Sibley (87) who was dismissed in the last over of the day . The visitors ended day 1 on 263/ 3 with Root unbeaten on 128. India will have to find a way to dismiss the English captain as he eyes up on carrying on from where he left. With the likes of Stokes and Buttler still to come , Indian bowlers will have to bowl in good areas and pick wickets at regular intervals on Day 2 in order to restrict England from posting a massive 1st innings total.
Play starts at 9.30am IST.

5 instances where Cricketers were found drunk on the field

Cricketers are always in the buzz be it for their performances on the field or due to their controversies off the field . Among them there were cricketers who were victims of alcoholism and this had a negative impact on their careers. Let’s look at 5 big names in the cricketing world who were found drunk on the field.

1) Andrew Flintoff ( England) – Freddie Flintoff as he is commonly known as was one of the finest all rounders to have played this game . Along with his contributions on the field, Freddie was also known for his activities outside the 22 yards . In the Jonathan Ross show ,when he was questioned that was he ever drunk on a cricket field , Flintoff corrected the reporter that the question actually should have been “ was he ever sober? “

2) Bobby Peel ( England ) – Bobby peel was a left-arm spin bowler from Yorkshire who was very handy with the bat too. In a county match played between Yorkshire and Middlesex in 1897, Bobby was found drunk on the 3rd day of the test match . He was later suspended by Yorkshire cricket because of his unprofessional behaviour


3) Andrew Symonds (Australia) – Andrew Symonds was a gifted player who was part of the golden period of Australian cricket . He is a two time world cup winner and was an impactful player. In 2005, before an ODI match against Bangladesh, Symonds lost his consciousness and slipped in the practice nets as he was drunk . Australian captain R. Ponting was furious with this behavior as he himself was a man of discipline. As a penalty , Symonds was later suspended from playing the next match which made him really upset.

Andrew Symonds was found drunk


4) Sir Gary Sobers (West Indies )– Sir Gary Sobers was a pillar of the deadly West Indian team of the 80’s . He played 96 test matches and scored 8032 runs at a healthy average of 57. He also picked 235 wickets. In an interview in lords, Sir Gary Sobers made a shocking revelation that he was not very “Sober” while playing his last test match where he scored a brilliant 150 for ages to remember


5) Herschelle Gibbs (South Africa) – Herschelle Gibbs was a stylish batsman of the early 21st century. He played a vital role for South Africa in the most successful run chase ever in the history of the game till date by scoring 175 runs which had blown the Australians away in the match . Gibbs played some great knocks under pressure at the opening of the innings and helped him team win from nowhere in many situations. In his autobiography “ To the point” , Gibbs revealed that there were many incidents where he went on to batting after consuming alcohol . He was not aware of the situation around him when he went on to bat but still managed to score tons of runs for his country.



Some of these players attracted attention towards them and also found success on the field due to alcoholism but also created a bad image and reputation which impacted their careers to some extent.

Indian speedster Mohammed Siraj makes his father proud

The Indian speedster Mohammed Siraj along with other players returned to their home soil after their historic win and success down under on Thursday 21st of January 2021.

All the players returned to their respective homes and rejoiced their historic win with their supporters and family members but immediately upon landing in Hyderabad at 9am in the morning , Siraj , from a triumphant tour down under where he made his test debut and was India’s highest wicket taker by picking 13 wickets , went to the graveyard in Khairatabad to pay tribute to his late father Mohammed Ghouse , who passed away at an age of 53 due to a lung ailment.

Mohammed Siraj praying in front of his father's grave

Siraj’s father passed away when he was with the Indian team in a bio bubble but he decided to stay on with the team and play for the country which was his father’s dream and his decision was immensely supported by his family members . Late Mohammed Ghouse was an auto driver who supported Mohammed Siraj right throughout his career and provided him with all the necessities to play cricket despite of all the financial adversities.

It had only been a week for Siraj with the Indian team when his father passed away. Though, the team had offered him to go back and attend his father’s funeral but Siraj decided to fulfill his father’s ultimate dream of playing for India which he did tremendously. Siraj made his test debut in the boxing day test match against Australia and took a 5 wicket haul in the Gabba test and played an instrumental role in the India’s 2-1 victory over the Australians in their own backyard.

Things were not going very easy for Mohammed Siraj, the lanky pacer firstly due to the sudden demise of his father who was the backbone of his life and secondly due to racial abuse which he had faced from the Australian crowd along with his fellow teammate Jasprit Bumrah in the 3rd test at Sydney. But siraj showed great character and determination in tough times in handling these situations.

Siraj said that his father’s death made him mentally strong and it helped him deal with the racial abuse that he faced from the Australian crowd. On his return , Mohammed Siraj laid flowers , offered prayers and spent some quiet hours at his father’s graveyard . This was a great tribute to his late father whom he cconsidered as the pillar of his life. Wherever his father is, he must be really proud on what his son has achieved for the country .

Australia Vs India Day 3 : Visitors show fighting spirit

Australia hold grip even after resilient fightback from Indian lower order.

Captain Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara resumed batting for India on Day 3. Before Pujara fell to an edge for 25. Rahane (37) fell in the slips with minutes to go before the end of the morning session. At Lunch, Mayank Agarwal (38) and Rishabh Pant (23) were in the field, with India trailing by 208 runs.

Both departed in the afternoon session, before Washington Sundar (62) and Shardul Thakur (67), both of them scored their maiden Test 50s. This is India’s highest ever 7th wicket stand at the Gabba. Shardul Thakur(67) and Washington Sundar (62) was out to Australia‘s Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc respectively. Then the next lower order batsmen couldn’t stay much more on the crease and they were out very soon after departure of Sundar and Finally at the end of the Ist innings, India were trailing by 33 runs. Josh Hazlewood again got five-wicket haul In this series.


Before Border Gavaskar Trophy series started, Many legendary Aussie former players were sure about the defeat of India and they predicted India would lose 4-0 but after watching the game of Indian team with huge amount of injury case and absence of captain Virat Kohli they understood they were wrong and Michael Vaughan expressed this via Twitter.

Australia players celebratea wicket

At the very end of the day, Harris and Warner started the Australian innings with the lead of 33 runs. Harris (1) and David Warner (20) are in the crease. Now Australia lead by 54 runs.

Sri Lanka struggling in their own backyard

After a 0-2 defeat in the ICC World Test Championship series against South Africa, Sri Lanka host England in a 2-Test series at the Galle International Stadium. The first SL v ENG Test match began on 14th January.


The England cricket team still has an chance of qualifying for the ICC World Test Championship final. Joe Root’s men hold the fourth position on the table. They will play two Tests in Galle this month and then visit India to battle the hosts in a 4-Test series.
Here’s a look at the Galle International Stadium’s pitch report and weather conditions.

Galle International Stadium pitch report:

The pitches in Sri Lanka have generally assisted the spin bowlers. The wicket at the Galle International Stadium is no different. In the previous SL v ENG Test on this ground, off-spinner Moeen Ali scalped eight wickets for the visitors. Unfortunately, Ali will miss the series owing to his positive COVID-19 test.

Galle International Stadium weather conditions:
The weather report hints there could be rainfall on the first three days of the first SL v ENG Test match. Many rain interruptions are expected during this SL v ENG series.

Day 1 Report:

The hosts lost their first wicket in as early as the seventh over, when Lahiru Thirimanne fell into Broad’s trap.Later, Broad had another when Kusal Mendis fell to his leg-cutter, feathering an edge to the wicketkeeper Jos Buttler. It was his fourth duck in a row in Tests. It was tough going. Dilruwan Perera and Embuldeniya both failed to get off the mark, and while Wanindu Hasaranga’s enterprising 22-ball 19 took Sri Lanka to 135, his dimissal, which helped Bess to the coveted five-wicket haul, ended a difficult innings.


The hosts were bundled out for 135 their lowest first-innings total in Galle after opting to bat, with Dom Bess claiming his second five-for in Test cricket. No Lankan Batsman can play an impact match.

The England batsmen’s start was also not good too much. The visitors lost Dom Sibley in the fifth over of their innings, when the hosts used the DRS to good effect – Sibley was adjudged caught at slip off Lasith Embuldeniya. When Zak Crawley, who scored a double-century in his last Test, got out England seemed in trouble at 17/2.


However, captain Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow absorbed the pressure and counter-attacked, putting on an unbroken 110* to help England go through to stumps primed for a second-day assault.Root brought up his 50th half-century in Test cricket, Bairstow a typically dominant 47*

Day 2 Report:

Sri Lanka failed to do good on the second day, as Joe Root’s record 168* helped England further their position of dominance in the first Test, helping the England to 320 for 4 at the Galle International Stadium today. The debutant, who displayed exemplary application on the turning wicket, however couldn’t make the most of those opportunities as he eventually departed on 73.


However, for a good part of the post Lunch session, with runs flowing quickly, Srilankan spinners often failed to hit the right lengths. The short-pitched deliveries, much like in the previous session. Srilankan bowlers unable to transfer pressure, Lawrence too brought up his maiden fifty soon after.

England skipper scored a century versus Sri Lanka


Even after the fall of Lawrence’s wicket, Root remained unfettered in his approach. He too got a life when his sweep hit Kusal Mendis straight on the body in the last over before Tea. As per reports rain distruppred the match after the tea break. At the end of the day England were 320 for 4 wickets. Captain Joe Root and skipper Jos Buttler is still not out with the runs of 168 and 7 respectively.

Here’s the playing Xl


Srilanka: Lahiru Thirimanne, Kusal Perera, Kusal Mendis, Dinesh Chandimal (c), Angelo Mathews, Niroshan Dickwella (wk), Dasun Shanaka, Wanindu Hasaranga, Dilruwan Perera, Lasith Embuldeniya, Asitha Fernando.

England: Zak Crawley, Dominic Sibley, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root (c), Daniel Lawrence (debut), Jos Buttler (wk), Sam Curran, Dominic Bess, Jack Leach, Mark Wood, Stuart Broad.

Northeast United FC signs Jamaican international Deshorn Brown

The Highlanders have made their first move in the winter transfer window and have signed Deshorn Brown from Bengaluru FC.

Deshorn Brown signed by Northeast united on a loan
VIÑA DEL MAR, CHILE – JUNE 20: Deshorn Brown of Jamaica takes a selfie with Lionel Messi of Argentina during the 2015 Copa America Chile Group B match between Argentina and Jamaica at Sausalito Stadium on June 20, 2015 in Viña del Mar, Chile. (Photo by Gabriel Rossi/LatinContent/Getty Images)

“Northeast United FC would like to announce that striker Deshorn Brown has joined the club from Bengaluru FC. Brown makes the move having scored 7 goals in 20 appearances for BFC since joining the ISL club in January 2020. Previously Brown has plied his trade in the USA, Norway, China and Spain, having played for Colorado Rapids, DC United and Shenzen FC to name a few. Brown has also featured for the Jamaican national team with 2 goals in 14 outings for the Reggae Boyz.” the official statement read.

Speaking on the signing, Northeast United’s Executive Director Priya Runchal said; “Deshorn
brings with him the experience of playing in the top leagues across the world as well as a knowledge of Indian football. Both of which is incredibly valuable during this stage of the Hero
ISL.

We are confident that he will hit the ground running and will have an impact on the team as we look to push for a playoff spot” she further added.

Xisco Hernandez has been brought in to replace the services of the Jamaican striker. Both Bengaluru FC and Northeast United are going through a tough patch and have parted ways with their Spanish head coaches Carles Cuadrat and Gerard Nus respectively. The Blues and the Highlanders sit at the 6th and 8th spot respectively and will be hoping for greener pastures going into the second half of the season.

The 30 year old striker has made a total of 10 appearances for the Blues having started 4 matches and came on as a substitute on 6 occasions. The Highlanders’ new recruit will be hoping to make a turn around in his fortunes at Northeast United.

Australian Open 2021: A preview to the men’s event of the ‘Happy Slam’

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After the first tournament of the season, WTA Abu Dhabi Open 2021 comes to a close with Belarusian tennis beauty, Aryna Sabalenka clinching the title, now it’s time for heading towards the very first Grand Slam of the season, the Australian Open.

The men’s event will be played from 7th to 22nd February in Melbourne. This prestigious tennis tournament will be played at two significant stadiums in Melbourne, namely Rod Laver Arena for the men’s event and Margaret Court Arena for women’s tournament. But before the tournament begins two men’s tournaments will be played in-between. Both the tournaments will be going hand-in-hand from 30th January to 7th February.

They are the Great Ocean Road Open and the Murray River Open. Both of these tournaments are part of 2021 ATP Tour. Both of these bouts will be played in Melbourne though there is no clarity on which one is going to be played at the Rod Laver Arena and at the Margaret Court Arena. Still, the main focus will be on the forthcoming Australian Open and like every year, we are expecting the same kind of class, technique, emotions, intense gameplay, and joy from some of the immortal names of this blue-blooded discipline of sports.


Top 5 players to watch out for:

1) Roger Federer:

No tennis fan of this globe can never ever forget this name. The Swiss professional tennis superstar, Roger Federer, 39, ranked world #5 by ATP, has always been a big name in the game of tennis. Widely regarded as the most consistent and the greatest player of all time, his trick shots, classy one-handed backhands, razor-sharp game sense, phenomenal control over his racquet makes him an utter delight to watch for the fans. He is surely going to be one of the top-contenders of the title and is a perfect example of the proverb, “Age is just a number.”

2) Rafael Nadal:

The perfect depiction of hard-work and sheer determination. Presently ranked world #2 by ATP, this spanish tennis star has a sublime fanbase and has been idolized by many aspiring, young tennis players for his, “I have no sense of humor about losing” mantra. The King of Clay, a superior counterpart of Roger Federer, Rafa is definitely one of those big names who can steal the show in a Grand Slam.


3) Dominic Thiem:


The Austrian tennis professional, presently ranked world #4 by ATP is also going to be on the roster afterall, player who has got the ability to pester tennis stars like Fede and Rafa will surely be among the ones to watch of the tournament. Dominic is also the second highest-ranked player in the Austrian tennis history behind former world #1 Thomas Muster. In 2020, Dominic Thiem won his first Grand Slam title at the 2020 US Open, defeating Alexander Zverev in a fifth-set tiebreak after being two sets down, becoming the first player to win a grand slam from this position since 2004 and the first at the US Open since Pancho Gonzales in 1949.


4) Nick Kyrgios:



An Australian tennis professional, Nick Kyrgios, ranked world #45 by ATP, is known for his hard-hitting, ravishing, strong and powerful forehands. Beside Ash Warty of women’s tennis, Nick Kyrgios is surely going to be one of the two locals at the Grand Slam to show his sheer class and power. Nick Kyrgios has stunned players like Fede, Dominic, Zverev and Rafa on various occasions with his “world-famous” forehand returns. Having the home country advantage by default, the tennis fans from the land of Kiwis will be keen to watch their local star lifting the prestigious trophy at the Rod Laver Arena.


5) Novak Djokovic:

Current Australian Open winner


Who can forget this Serbian tennis star. The present world #1 as ranked by ATP and a defending champion of the Australian Open, Novak Djokovic is that one player who can turn a match’s fortune towards him at any point of the game. A player whose two-handed backhands are used as an asset for learners, Novak is also a human full of dedication, hard-working and fun-loving nature and is also loved by all tennis admirers across the globe. He is surely among the top-contenders of the title, precisely among the top 3 besides Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. Also, there is a small tip for Novak’s fellow opponent that, “Never celebrate too early as the game is not over until it’s over when Novak is present on the court.”


Wildcard entries for Australia Open 2021:



Indian tennis player Sumit Nagal has been given a singles wildcard entry for the Australian Open 2021. Sumit Nagal and Wang Xiyu of China will compete in the main draw after being named recipients of the tournament’s Asia-Pacific wildcards. Sumit and Wang have joined Daria Gavrilova, Astra Sharma, Christopher O’Connell, Maddison Inglis, Lizette Cabrera, and Marc Polmans, who were announced as the main-draw wildcards prior to Christmas last year.

“I am very thankful to all the people who put effort in helping me get a wild card for the 2021 Australian Open. Thanks to Tennis Australia for all their effort to make this slam possible in these circumstances,” the 22-year old Indian young sensation had tweeted before the New Year.

Summing up in a whole, the men’s event of the Australia Open is going to be a pure depiction of absolute class, talent, determination and hard-work like every year with a strong will of history being rewritten in the corridors of the historic Rod Laver Arena. The tickets of the Australian Open 2021 are all already live on the official website.

26TH season of Major League Soccer is here

The American Top Flight Major League Soccer is an highly anticipated football league in the US and Canada.

The 2021 season will be the 26th season of (MLS) and will see the addition of Austin FC as an expansion club, which will take the league to 27 total teams. Columbus Crew SC are the defending champions of America, having defeated Seattle Sounders FC in MLS Cup 2020, while the Philadelphia Union are the defending Supporters’ Shield winners.

Major League Soccer

The Major League Soccer kicks off its seasons anytime from the end of February to the beginning on March, but things have changed due to the coronavirus pandemic and the league finds itself in a financial crisis.

In December of 2020, Garber addressed the media and gave the world an update on the 26th season of the American Top Division. Garber also explained that it remains intent on starting the 2021 Major League Soccer season in mid-March.

“All of you know that we have an unbelievably crowded calendar this year,” Garber said of the importance of the mid-March start date. “We have World Cup qualifiers, we have the Gold Cup, we have the Concacaf Champions League, the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup that was delayed a year, we have the Canadian Championship. We have a schedule that is as crowded and as busy as any, perhaps in the history of the league.”

“And as we learned from last year, and as we’re seeing play out with the other North American leagues and even now with the EPL and other European leagues, our schedule must provide us with the opportunity to make up any matches in the event that we have postponed games due to positive COVID tests.”

This season of Major League Soccer will not be open to spectators and will be a closer door affair. Fans might be allowed mid-way through the season keeping in mind the then current state of the pandemic.

But, the news is that the MLS will return to action for the 26th consecutive year.

Cristiano Ronaldo loves to score and break records

Cristiano Ronaldo loves to get his name into the record books and has achieved the biggest feat in the world of football.

Cristiano Ronaldo shoots past the goalkeeper

With 759 goals to his name, the Portuguese skipper has now levelled himself with Josef Bican, the highest ever goalscorer in the history of football. The defending champions of Italy hosted a seventh-placed Sassuolo on a cold evening at the Allianz Stadium. The Old lady failed to create many chances in the first half but things took an unusual turn as Pedro Obiang was given his marching orders for a dangerous tackle on Federico Chiesa just before half-time.

That was it for the Juventus as they capitalised on the numerical advantage as Danilo fired in a long ranger and put his side on the front. But, just 8 minutes later Gregoire Defrel brought his side back on level terms to stun the hosts.

Ramsey, who replaced the injured Weston McKennie in the first half, got the all-important second and his first of the season and restored Juve’s 1 goal advantage. Series A’s top scorer Cristiano Ronaldo drilled in the third goal for his side and sealed the deal for Juventus.

Not long ago, the 35-year-old edged past former Brazilian great Pele’s record of 757 official goals. Ronaldo’s long-time rival Lionel Messi is at the fifth spot in the coveted list with 719 goals to his name. Of course, there is still extensive controversy on this, with Brazil legend Pele and his former club Santos claiming he scored over 1,000 goals. There are questions on whether these are goals scored in ‘official’ games or not.

The 5-time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo is just 7 goals shy to become the highest ever international goalscorer.

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Paula Badosa Gilbert Faces Defeat But Shows Great Sportswomanship

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Paula Badosa Gilbert after clinching an epic Round of 32 win against Alizé Cornet of France, faced Veronika Kudermetova of Russia in the Round of 16 of the on-going Abu Dhabi Open 2021.

A battle of two emerging sensations of women’s tennis, the match went to the third set after each of them won one set each out of the first two sets. Veronika Kudermetova had to face the ravishing backhands of Paula Badosa Gilbert but her two-handed backhands proved to be her trump card as she clinched the first set 6-4.

Paula Badosa Gilbert during her round of 16 match

From the beginning of the second set, Badosa displayed some great sense of gameplay as her powerful backhands did their job this time accompanied by a couple of well-knitted forehands as she won the second set 6-4. But, the third and the final set proved to be unexpectedly devastating as Paula Badosa Gilbert was not allowed by Veronika to find her feet as the Russian world #46 thrashed the Spanish tennis beauty 6-1 in the third set thus, claiming a thumping victory and also, taking herself all the way into the Round of 8.

This match also witnessed 15 aces out of which, 10 were of Veronika Kudermetova while the remaining 5 came from Paula Badosa’s racquet. Presently, Veronika Kudermetova has got zero singles titles for her name and she will be surely willing to clinch her maiden trophy.

Just hours after the match, Paula Badosa Gilbert posted on her social media handles congratulating Veronika for her win over Badosa and the 23-year old Spanish tennis beauty quoted, “Sometimes you win. Sometimes you learn. Just need to keep working hard!” Her sense of gamesmanship or better, ‘gameswomanship’ has touched the hearts of millions of tennis admirers across the globe.

Veronika Kudermetova will be facing Elina Svitolina of Ukraine in her Round of 8 tie of the Abu Dhabi Open 2021 on 11th January.

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3 Reasons Why Real Madrid Needs To Offload Ramos

Real Madrid is in a financial crisis at the moment and is struggling to meet the contract demands of Club Captain and Club legend, Sergio Ramos.

President Perez wants Ramos to stay keeping in the interests of the club intact. He has rejected the initial wage demands of Ramos and here’s why it is best for the club to offload him this season.

Ramos Posing Greater than the Club

Ramos believes that he is greater than the club. He is aware of his great influence in the squad and is now playing the power cards to pressurize the board to accept his personal terms and conditions.

Offloading Ramos can make him push the idea of Real Madrid disrespecting their club legends. It is speculated that Ramos can go for a PR war against the club.

But, with the club suffering huge losses due to empty stadiums and no income from football tourism, there might be less sympathy for him. A Marca poll was conducted where it revealed that 76% of people think Ramos ‘should understand the situation.’

Ramos is no doubt a Los Blancos legend, but so were Fernando Hierro, Raul, Iker Casillas and Cristiano Ronaldo. The tag of legend didn’t stop Perez to sell them when it needed the most and this time, it should not be different either.

Ramos not agreeing with Wage Structure

Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos with Club president Perez

Ramos and Florentino Perez have a long history when it comes to falling out before making up over a new contract. Ramos flirted with Man United during 2015 to get a contract renewal but things are not the same now.

Perez has the best interests for the club and has been feeling the financial strain of the COVID-19. It is totally illogical to increase the wage of a certain player by pushing the club to crisis.

While every player has taken a pay-cut to help the club when it is in a dire state, Ramos has asked to make him an exceptional case. In a club of this big stature, Perez has the right to stick to the rules and reject the demands even if he is a legend.

Making Way for the Future Generation

Ramos was brilliant in the last season and led the club to win the LA Liga. His influence in the team is second to none but there will be life after Ramos. He will hang up his boots after 3 or 4 years max but the club will stay as it is.

Ramos leaving Madrid will give Eder Militao an opportunity to partner with Raphael Varane in the defense. Militao’s progress has been restricted since he joined the club as he is down the pecking order to Ramos and Varane. He has shown great potential in the UCL game vs Man City and can be the one for the future.

Real Madrid can also fill the vacancy of Sergio Ramos’ experience by signing David Alaba who is just 28 years of age. He is a free agent and can be a proper replacement of Ramos in the defense. Dayot Upemecano is another player who can be bought for the future as well if Ramos leaves. These signings will not happen if he stays and even if it materializes, this can hinder the growth of all the new players in the defensive department.

What the future lies?

Only time will tell if Real Madrid will sell Ramos or offer him a new deal. The fact that they have proposed an offer already shows their interest to keep him but if he tries to show power over the club president, Perez shouldn’t wait a second to sell him and pave a way for the future of the club.

It is a start of a new episode and there is a long way to go before the curtains will fall for this new saga.

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In an open conversation with the brilliant Rahul KP

The next guest on Star’s talk is none other than one of India’s brightest talent Rahul KP who became one of first player’s to represent India at the U17 World Cup.

He has been one of best standout performers for Kerala Blasters over the last two seasons and has taken the flanks by fire. The Junior Indian international spoke about his footballing journey in an exclusive interview with Sportskindle Media.

On being asked about his experience with Kerala Blasters and his new team-mates, Rahul said “I have had a great experience with the club so far. I’m extremely thankful for the opportunity Kerala Blasters has given me. My family and I are proud to be a part of the squad.”

Rahul KP versus Bengaluru FC
Rahul Kannoly Praveen of Kerala Blasters FC and Harmanjot Khabra of Bengaluru FC during match 21 of the Indian Super League ( ISL ) between Bengaluru FC and Kerala Blasters FC held at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium, Bengaluru, India on the 23rd November 2019. Photo by: Faheem Hussain / SPORTZPICS for ISL

Manjappada have always backed their side irrespective of what the results have been and he did not hold back to describe the best fans in the country for him and said, “Words are less to describe the fans of Kerala Blasters. They are amazing and the best in the country.”

Everyone has a favourite memory or a favourite match and when we asked Rahul about the memory that he would love to relive again, he said, “I’ll never forget my game against Mumbai City FC in the 2018 Super Cup, when I played as a part of Indian Arrows. Missed 5 open nets, but still scored a difficult chance. It was truly a memorable match.”

Northeast United FC up for a challenge versus Hyderabad FC in Matchday 51

Matchday 51 brings us back to the Tilak Maidan in Vasco as Northeast United FC face off against a high flying Hyderabad FC.

Blast from the past :


In February 2020, Northeast United FC hosted Hyderbad FC in a home game and unfortunately the Highlanders were on the receiving end of an absolute 5-1 massacre due to suspensions and injuries to key players.

Northeast United FC :

Gerard Nus and company come into this game on the back of 2-0 defeat against ATK MohunBagan and are ever so determined to change their fortunes against the Nizams. The Highlanders have looked good in front of the goal but what is a point of concern is their finishing as they rank second in terms of big chances missed. The absence of target man Kwesi Appiah has been felt and has come in as an added topping to their problems. Northeast United’s backline has been consistent irrespective of the result in their last outing.

Northeast United FC Captain Ben Lambot with Dylan Fox


“We analyze about Hyderabad, we know they are a good side. We’re not just thinking about what they’re coming from which obviously it was a good result for them but also we know that no matter what has been the result, before this game they come from three defeats. But, the point is for us it’s not just what happens in the game in terms of results.

We analyze what the teams do with ball possession, what the teams do defensively, what they do in set pieces and so many other ways of creating chances. We try to take everything under consideration. We gonna try to be in our best. We gonna try to be defensively good and offensively good as well.” added Gerard Nus at the Pre-match press conference.

Hyderabad FC :

The Nizams started the season on a high but did lose their momentum but they are back on track as they brought an end to their losing streak of 3 matches against Chennaiyin FC and pulled off a massive 4-1 win with former Northeast United FC winger Halicharan Narzary scoring a brace, Joel Chianese and Joao Victor scoring one each.

Manuel Marquez’s men have been strong in the attacking third but have looked vulnerable when it’s comes to defending. The Nizams have gifted some goals to their opponents courtesy of some silly mistakes and will hope not to repeat their mistakes against the Highlanders.


“The other day we won 4-1 after three consecutive defeats. The same NorthEast United started the competition six games without losing, but now they didn’t win the last five games, If we win against NorthEast United, we will be in the top four, but you have to improve game-by-game and see what happens.” said Manuel Marquez at the Pre-match press conference.

Battles to watch out for :

Khassa Camara vs Aridane Santana

The Mauritanian international has been the Highlanders go to player in the middle of the park and has delivered some match winning performances and will surely be the man to the watch out for from Northeast United FC’s point of view to stop Hyderabad’s promising attack.
Aridane on the other hand has continued his form from where he left last season and will be looking to add some goals to his tally against the Highlanders but will need to get past Khassa Camara.

Halicharan Narzary vs Ashutosh Mehta

The former Northeast United winger is on cloud nine courtesy of a brace against the Marina Machans and will hope to continue the same form going into the tie against his former side but standing in his way will be Ashutosh Mehta.
Ashutosh Mehta will have the responsibility on his shoulders to take care of Halicharan Narzary in order to keep a clean sheet and will also play an integral part to creat some chances from the right flank.

Probable Starting XI :

Northeast United FC : Subhasish, Ashutosh, Dylan, Benjamin, Gurjinder, Camara, Fanai, Apuia, Machado, Gallego, Suhair.

Hyderabad FC : Subrata, Odei, Akash, Ashish, Chinglensana, Hitesh, Luis, Yasir, Halicharan, Chianese, Aridane.

Live Broadcast Schedule:

Hero ISL 2020-21 Match 51: NorthEast United FC vs Hyderabad FC

Date: January 8 (Friday)

Time: 7:30 PM onwards

Channels: Star Sports Network

Streaming: Disney+ Hotstar and Jio TV

European Superpowers Who Are In Desperate Need Of Recruitments

The winter transfer window is upon us and there are some European superpowers who haven’t had the best of campaigns so far. This is the perfect opportunity for them to bolster their squads. Here are 3 teams which are in need of desperate recruitments.



Barcelona:


Being a Barcelona fan is the toughest thing right now in the footballing world. Leo Messi is unhappy and out of form. There isn’t a board. Main players are out with long-term injuries. It’s a huge mess at the club. The least the club can do are recruit players.
With Gerard Pique and Sergi Roberto out with long term injuries the Blaugrana should move for a defender. Also Ronald Koeman has recently said that Barca need someone upfront so a striker is also needed.

1. Dayot Upamecano: Undoubtedly the best young centre back in the world, Upamecano’s reputation has taken a meteoric rise after his brilliant defensive showings in the UCL last season. He was a key player of the Leipzig team which reached the Champions League semi final last season.

Dayot Upamecano is already under the scanner of top european Superpowers



2. Lautaro Martinez: He was one of Barca’s top priorities in the summer but Barca failed to negotiate a deal with Inter for the young Argentine. He would be the ideal replacement for El Pistolero. He is a player who is not just a finisher but also a great passer. He has been one of the main players at Inter under Antonio Conte and has been equally impressive when playing for the Argentina National Team. Barca should really go all out to sign him.

Lautaro Martinez can be one of the recruitments



Arsenal:


There was a time when every team in the world would shudder when they had to play against Arsenal. The tables have turned now and it is Arsenal who shudder at the thought of playing against big teams. This is mainly due to lackluster transfer business.

READ: Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal Gun Down Frank Lampard’s Chelsea in the FA Cup Final

1. Isco- 2 years back every team wanted Isco (even Barcelona). But somehow the Spanish playmaker has found himself on the bench mostly. He has got only 348 minutes this season which shows the limited faith Zidane has in him. With Arsenal struggling in the playmaking department , Isco should be the perfect player from them. He should be cheap as well. Anything around 25M would definitely interest Los Blancos.

2. Riqui Puig- If Arsenal are to look for more temporary options then Riqui Puig is definitely the go to man. With Ronald Koeman determined to not give Riqui Puig playing chances and with Puig also ready to not leave Barca permanently- Arsenal could strike a quality lone deal. Whenever Puig has played he has been a class apart. He will bring the exact spark which Arteta’s team have been missing.



Borrusia Dortmund:


It hasn’t been an exactly happy season for Dortmund as they sit 4th in the Bundesliga table. Their manager Lucien Favre has been sacked and they are still on the lookout for a new manager. Attack has never been Dortmund’s problem. It has always been the defence. Their defence has been really leaky and they have been thrashed by teams like Stuttgart.

1. A full back: Achraf Hakimi has left, Nico Schulz isn’t good, Piszczek and Schmelzer aren’t particularly young and Raphael Guerreiro is much better in an offensive role . Only Thomas Meunier is a proper full back which Dortmund have. So a left full back is one which Dortmund desperately need. Luke Shaw would be a budget buy so will be his understudy Brandon Williams. Both are quality players and will add extra teeth to the Dortmund squad.

2. A backup striker: Dortmund have probably the world’s 2nd best striker at the moment in Erling Haaland. But to be fare he isn’t superhuman and also needs a break. Yes there is the 16 year old sensation Moukoko but an experienced campaigner could help the young guns to fire more and also provide a solid backup.

With Ronald Koeman looking for a new centre forward and Antoine Griezmann and Leo Messi being other alternatives it well maybe time over for Martin Braithwaite at Barca. Dortmund would get him for around 10M which is really cheap. Barca will accept anything as they are in dire need of money. Braithwaite will add extra pace and flair to the already explosive Dortmund team and would be a perfect backup.

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India vs Australia: Gill and Rahane showed gritty intent as India makes a comeback in the series

It was a tale of class and composure as India clinch a historic win over the Aussies in the Boxing Day Test after they suffered a crushing defeat in the first test at Adelaide.

After Australia were bowled out for 195 in the first innings, India came out to bat with Shubman Gill playing a crucial 45 runs knock, Rishab Pant’s little of cameo of 29 runs from 40 balls and captain Rahane’s 112 runs knock which became a fairytale innings just like Sunil Gavaskar’s 96 against Pakistan and Sachin Tendulkar’s 142 against Australia in the hearts of all Indian fans.

India put up a pretty good score of 326 on the board in their first innings. After that, the Aussies came out to bat and were bowled out for 200 runs in the second innings with Mohammed Siraj bagging three wickets while Ravindra Jadeja and Ravi Ashwin claimed two wickets each alongside Jasprit Bumrah taking two wickets while Umesh Yadav took just one.

India came out to bat in the second innings with a target of 70 runs to chase and lost early wickets in the form of Mayank Agarwal and Cheteshwar Pujara scoring 5 and 3 respectively. But, once again, Shubhman Gill and captain Ajinkya Rahane taking the charge as they chased down the target with absolute class and comfort. Shubman played some classy shots as he remained not out at 35 of 36 balls while Rahane remained not out on 27 runs and was even dropped on 19 runs by Mitchell Starc.

India skipper Rahane celebrates with Gill after the victory

With this win, India bounces back in the series as they level it 1-1 and infact, proves the predictions of Michael Vaughan and Shane Warne to be absolutely invalid as Vaughan had previously quoted, “India will lose the series 4-0” while the spin king had said, “India will be crushed by Australia at the MCG.” The third test will be played from 7th January to 11th January at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

Hero ISL 2020-21: Csaba Laszlo’s Marina Machans to face a winless SC East Bengal

The Indian Super League returns after a two-day Christmas break with a new rivalry taking shape as two-time champions Chennaiyin FC take on Kolkata giants SC East Bengal for the first time ever, at the Tilak Maidan on Saturday evening.

After clinching a 2-1 win over FC Goa one week prior, Chennaiyin FC takes on Robbie Fowler’s East Bengal who are winless so far in this season. Today’s these three points could bring Chennaiyin FC into the top-four fray following two consecutive victories, with only three points currently separating them and FC Goa and NorthEast United FC, both on 11 points and having played more games than Chennaiyin FC.

In the pre-match press conference on Christmas eve, CFC Head Coach Csaba Laszlo revealed that the game against SC East Bengal may come too soon for Portuguese striker Isma Goncalves, who has missed the previous two games through injury. Having returned to training, he could be in contention for Chennaiyin’s following game, a high-profile encounter against Antonio Lopez Habas’ ATK Mohun Bagan on December 29th.

SC East Bengal face Chennaiyin FC

Laszlo will however be without the services of right-back Reagan Singh against East Bengal, who misses out through suspension after accumulating four yellow cards. Fans may be treated to an interesting sub-plot when Chennaiyin FC and SC East Bengal meet on Saturday. Three former Chennaiyin FC strikers are now part of the Red & Golds, in the form of CFC legend Jeje Lalpekhlua, CFC’s first ever goalscorer Balwant Singh, and Kerala striker CK Vineeth. Jeje is still the Marina Machans’ leading goalscorer and also the highest appearance maker in all competitions, having been at the club for their first six seasons before making the switch to the Kolkata side this campaign.


“East Bengal have good football players. They are a new team that needs to adapt to the ISL. I saw that in the starting few matches they weren’t good but they are improving and it will be a difficult challenge for us for sure,” said the Chennaiyin FC gaffer Csaba Laszlo.

CFC will be wary of the threat East Bengal pose, with the latter motivated to get their first win. The midfield injection of skipper Rafael Crivellaro and India international Anirudh Thapa was instrumental in the victory over FC Goa, and Chennaiyin will be hoping to continue the good work with games coming in quick succession. Rafael scored a stunning Olympic goal against Goa, which also bagged him the ISL Goal of the Week award. The Marina Machans will be hopeful on their attackers for converting more of their chances in coming games though.

Chennaiyin FC are currently fourth in the list of shots taken after six games, with only five goals coming from those. That makes them third from bottom when it comes to converting those chances, a statistic they will be eager to rectify against a not-so-steady SC East Bengal. At the other end, Vishal Kaith and his defensive line have kept two clean sheets so far. The Himachal Pradesh keeper has made some stellar saves this season, and his sole aim will be to build on the same in search of victory.

Hero ISL 2020-21: Odisha FC eye first win against Northeast United FC

Matchday 37 brings us back to GMC Stadium in Bambolim as Odisha FC eye their first win of the season against a Northeast United FC side who are determined to bounce back stronger.

Blast from the past :

In February 2020 Odisha FC hosted the Highlanders and produced to dramatic comeback to clinch a 2-1 victory even after going 0-1 down at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar.

Odisha FC :

The Juggernauts went through a complete revamp with a new head coach on board and looked too good on paper. But, things have not fallen at place for Stuart Baxter’s side as they find themselves at the bottom of the table with just 1 point to their name. Goal scoring has become a point of concern for the Odisha FC despite big names like Manuel Onwu, Marcelinho, Diego Maurício making their way to the Bhubaneshwar based club.

Picture by – Odisha FC Media

Their problems don’t just end here, Stuart Baxter’s side have failed to keep a single clean sheet in all of their 6 outings as things have gone against Steven Taylor and his defensive partner Jacob tratt. However, Odisha FC did showcase what they bring to the table in the tie against the Blues even though they ended up on the losing side.


“NorthEast United have quite a few quick players. They play back to front very quickly and get the ball into their strikers. So whatever solutions we plan will be based on our team and not an individual marking a man closely.”
said Stuart Baxter during the Pre Match Press Conference.

Northeast United FC:

The Highlanders did kickstart their campaign in a bright fashion but things have changed a bit in the past few weeks. Northeast United are winless in their last 3 matches that saw them play out 2 draws and their first defeat against Jamshedpur FC. But, the Highlanders are determined more than ever to bounce back stronger and end the year on a high as this will be their last outing in 2020.

Odisha FC will be looking for their first win against NorthEast United

They currently occupy one of the four play off spots and will be looking to go in and fight with the same approach in which their started their campaign. The Highlanders have scored all of their 8 goals from inside the box and will surely look to capitalise on Odisha FC’s weaknesses. Gerard Nus’s men will come out all guns blazing when they face a tough challenge against Odisha FC.


“I have no doubt that we gonna have a good performance tomorrow. We stick to the positive things that we have done so far since day 1. We are again gonna be a team who are serious in our organization, be strong in our defensive duties but also we are a team that knows how to create chances, we score from many ways in our previous games and that’s again one of our strengths. We are not a defensive team like we heard. We are team that knows how to attack, has different ways to punish the teams scoring wise and in the same time we know how to defend.” said Gerard Nus at the Club’s Pre Match Press Conference.

Battles to watch out for :

Khassa Camara vs Marcelinho

The Mauritanian Machine has already displayed his abilities to control the game from the middle of the park and will have a key role to play in tonight’s clash against Odisha FC and will also have the responsibility to deny Marcelinho any chances.


The Brazilian playmaker has not yet shown a glimpse of his playmaking capability at Odisha but will surely need to be on his toes against the Highlanders and to create chances he will need to outplay Khassa Camara.

Nandakumar vs Ashutosh Mehta

The young Indian winger has been crucial for Odisha to build up their attack and in order to get something out of tonight’s clash he will need to make sure he is at his best against Northeast United’s Right back Ashutosh Mehta.


The Northeast United FC fullback will play his 50th Hero ISL game tonight and will be ever so determined to get his side all the 3 points but he will need to be on his toes because he will have the duty to deny Nanda any chances.

Probable Starting XI :

Odisha FC : Arshdeep, Sarangi, Taylor, Tratt, Hendry, Bora, Cole Alexander, Jerry, Nanda, Onwu, Maurício

Northeast United FC : Subhasish, Ashutosh, Lambot, Fox, Gurjinder, Camara, Lalengmawia, Ninthoi, Gallego, Suhair, Appiah.

Global Esports Federation concluded it’s first ever football freestyle competition on 13th December

Esports India, who have been a prominent member of the Global Esports Federation concluded it’s first ever football freestyle competition in collaboration with Football Freestyle India which was aired live on YouTube and Facebook on 13th December, 2020.

This competition attracted over 300 participants from all across the country to showcase their hidden talent, no matter whether they were amateurs or professionals and out of them, 100 athletes got selected. The preliminary qualification round was played on 11th and 12th of December, 2020. For the finale, 6 freestylers made it to the top and battled on 13th December, 2020.

Esports India President, Amit Gaikwad qouted, “The success of the first ever online freestyle football competition was overwhelming and extremely encouraging. The talent of these freestylers were of truly international levels. We are optimistic about the future of eSports India and are looking forward for a revolution in sports.”

India’s top football freestyler Archis Patil, along with other prolific names from the circuit had joined the esteemed team of judges for this competition. Alankar Timber and Monish Nikam who also hold a world record conferred by the Guinness World Book of Records are lending their expertise and encouragement to all the athletes taking part making the event the first of its kind.

Global Esports Federation

All the participants were awarded participation certificates, with the winners going away with cash prizes, medals and lots of confidence and encouragement. To sum it up, the competition was a big success as it created a solid foundation for more such freestyling tournaments to take place and promote the sport on a much larger scale in the country.

Indian football freestyle ace, Archish Patil said, “The talent that India shows in freestyle football is promising on a global scale. Talent just needs the right platform that gives justice to their passion and that’s
what ESPORTS INDIA has provided. We are sure to have many more freestyle stars in the upcoming years.”
The competition is an extension of the mission started by the Global Esports Federation of trying to develop a community for esports in India, so as to encourage more and more athletes to take part and in turn become a part of a thriving global community.

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It’s Messi vs Ronaldo as Barca host Juventus in a top notch Champions League battle

The wait is finally over. It’s Messi vs Ronaldo time! People have been longing for this day ever since the draw was made.

They were also supposed to meet on the 29th of October but CR7 contracted COVID-19 due to which he missed the match. The last time these two sides met Barcelona completely outplayed Juventus to win 2-0.

Messi vs Ronaldo tonight in UCL Clash


Barcelona come into the match having lost their La Liga fixture 2-1 while Juve come into the match on the back of a 2-1 derby win against Torino. For Barcelona Ousmane Dembele, Ansu Fati, Gerard Pique, Sergi Roberto are out with injury while Juve’s Giorgio Chiellini and Merih Demiral miss out due to the same reason.


Barca are the only team with a 100% record in this season’s UCL and they would definitely like to end the group stage with that record intact. Juventus need to beat Barca by 3 goals atleast to get first spot.


Ronald Koeman might change his formation to 4-3-1-2 to accomodate his lack of wingers. Andrea Pirlo should stick to his 3-5-2 as there is no reason why he should change. Whatever the result will be, it will be a huge event for fans all over the world as finally the two legends meet after two years.
They last met on 28th October 2018 when Barca and Real drew 2-2 with both Messi and Ronaldo on the scoresheet. It will also be Arthur Melo against his former club and a clash between two best friends Frenkie De Jong and Matthijs De Ligt.



Predicted Lineups:



Barcelona (4-3-1-2): Ter Stegen, Alba, Lenglet, De Jong, Dest, Pjanic, Busquets, Coutinho, Messi, Braithwaite, Griezmann

Juventus (3-5-2): Szczesny, Bonucci, De Ligt, Cuadrado, Alex Sandro, Rabiot, Dybala, Arthur, Chiesa, Ronaldo,Morata

Manchester United: What’s wrong and how to fix them? ft. an Important Transfer Window 2021

Manchester United may have produced a spectacular comeback against Southhampton but they have been nowhere near good. Since Sir Alex left the club, United have never been the same.

Their best finish after Fergie’s retirement was in the 17/18 season when they came second under Jose Mourinho. After that it’s been a complete mess. Here are 3 things United need to do to gain back some of their long gone superiority.



1. FIND A FORMATION AND SORT OUT THEIR MIDFIELD:


When Donny Van De Beek arrived at Old Trafford in the summer all the fans were excited. But under Solksjaer De Beek has been somewhat of a bench warmer. He has come on to play the last hour or quarter of their PL fixtures. Paul Pogba hasn’t been anywhere near his best. Their only midfielder who has been firing is Bruno Fernandes. The best formation for the Red Devils right now will be a 4-1-2-1-2 – the diamond midfield. David De Gea will be in goal with a back four of Alex Telles, Victor Lindelof, Harry Maguire and Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

The defensive midfielder can be either Nemanja Matic or Scott Mctominay. Solksjaer has loads of midfielders to choose from but the best pairing of central mids will be undoubtedly Pogba and Van De Beek. The number 10 role will be taken quite obviously by Bruno Fernandes. Solksjaer has a tough decision in selecting his strike duo. If he wants a counter attacking setup with high pace then the best double will be of Martial and Rashford. But if he wants a mixture of pace and strength he can go either with Rashford and Cavani or Martial and Cavani.

The selection of the strike duo may vary from game to game. But if Solksjaer wants a more defensive outlook he can go with a 4-2-2-2 where Pogba and Matic would be the two CDMs and Van De Beek advances into the role of an attacking midfielder alongside Bruno Fernandes. This formation gives Solksjaer loads of options to choose from in midfield and also allows for rotation as United have a host of midfielders available for selection.



2. HAVE A SUCCESSFUL TRANSFER WINDOW:


For the last few seasons Manchester United‘s transfer business has been abysmal. They have brought and sold players without thinking about the future. Here are the best deals United could strike in the January window.

Manchester United players in all smiles mood



OUTS:


1.Luke Shaw: When Shaw was signed he was one of the best young full backs in the world but injuries have ruined his career. Now that Alex Telles has been signed and United have a more than able backup in the young Brandon Williams it maybe time for Luke Shaw to move on. It will be good for United as well as this sale could easily generate 15-20M.

2. Marcos Rojo: No one remembers when Marcos Rojo last played for Manchester United. He hasn’t even played for the Argentina national team after the 2018 World Cup. There have been rumours of him returning to Argentina as well. It would be great for both parties as Rojo could move to somewhere where he gets regular game time and United could also get a handy 5-6 million from the sale.

3. Daniel James: It would be great for James to move to a club from Manchester United where he gets regular game time otherwise it may restrict his development. It is not imperative for James to leave permanently. He could leave on loan for a season or half a season to get game time. It would also lessen some of Solksjaer’s selection headaches.


INS:


1. A Quality Right Winger: Manchester United spent the whole transfer window running behind Jadon Sancho but couldn’t strike a deal with Borussia Dortmund. It would be best for United to consider at alternatives. There are some great right wingers whom Manchester United can get for less than what they were splashing for Sancho. Adama Traore has been a consistent performer for Wolves in the past 2 seasons and he would be a great signing. Then there is Lucas Ocampos who has been rejuvenated after he signed for Sevilla. Both of them Manchester United can get for around 45-50 million and they would be great deals.

2. Milan Skriniar: Knowing Ed Woodward he will never sign Skriniar. But if mistakenly Woodward signs him it will be a huge boost to the Manchester United defence. Skriniar has caught the eye of some of Europe’s heavyweights but Inter would want a very good amount for the Slovak defender. Tottenham were also rumoured to be interested in the defender but were unwilling to pay Inter’s hefty asking price.

3. GET THE BEST OUT OF PAUL POGBA:
Pogba has had mixed success at Manchester United. When he came back in the 17/18 season. He was brilliant. But then he fell out with Jose Mourinho and his form went down. Again when Solkjaer first joined, Pogba was at his unbeatable best. Then an ankle injury, rumoured unhappiness all led to his form hit rock bottom.

Solksjaer has now started using Pogba as a deep lying playmaker where Pogba has been highly ineffective. In an interview Pogba himself said he isn’t effective as a deep lying playmaker but effective when playing as an advanced playmaker. Real Madrid and Juventus have been rumoured to have been interested in the Frenchman and Pogba has also expressed his likeness for Zinedine Zidane. If Pogba does leave it will be a huge loss for United and it should be prevented at all costs.

If Manchester United manages to do all these 3 things then we may well see them returning to their best very soon!

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Hyderabad vs Jamshedpur: Miners or Nizams who will have the last laugh?

It’s the second last match of Gameweek 3 as The Nizams take on Jamshedpur at Tilak Maidan. Jamshedpur are yet to register a win this campaign while Hyderabad have had a good start with a win and a draw. Along with ATKMB they are the only team to have not conceded a goal yet. Manolo Marquez has really transformed the shambolic Hyderabad defence into a very disciplined one. Hyderabad though will be without key players Lluis Sastre and Joel Chianese with coach Manuel Marquez also not ready to risk Fran Sandaza.



HEAD TO HEAD:


Being new additions to the ISL last year, the franchises have met only twice. The last time they met it was a 1-1 draw. Before that in their first meeting Jamshedpur took the win.



KEY BATTLES:

ARIDANE SANTANA vs NERIJUS VALSKIS:
The battle of the two big centre forwards!
Valskis already has scored 3 goals this season while Aridane has 1. Both of them will be hungry for goals and Jamshedpur will need Valskis in top form to have any chance of breaking past this stubborn Hyderabad defence.

Hyderabad players during their training session


Squads


Hyderabad FC

Goalkeepers: Lalbiakhlua Jongte, Laxmikant Kattimani, Manas Dubey, Subrata Paul

Defenders: Akash Mishra, Asish Rai, Chinglensana Singh, Dimple Bhagat, Kynsailang Khongsit, Nikhil Prabhu, Odei Onaindia, Sahil Panwar

Midfielders: Abhishek Halder, Adil Khan, Sahil Tavora, Halicharan Narzary, Hitesh Sharma, Joao Victor, Laldanmawia Ralte, Mark Zothanpuia, Mohammed Yasir, Nikhil Poojary, Souvik Chakrabarti, Sweden Fernandes

Forwards: Aridane Santana, Fran Sandaza, Ishan Dey, Lalawmpuia, Liston Colaco, Rohit Danu



Jamshedpur FC

Goalkeepers: Pawan Kumar, Niraj Kumar, TP Rehenesh, Raj Mahato, Vishal Yadav

Defenders: Narender Gahlot, Joyner Lourenco, Ricky Lallawmawma, Sandip Mandi, Laldinliana Renthlei, Karan Amin, Peter Hartley, Stephen Eze, Subhash Barua, Manash Protim Gogoi

Midfielders: Aitor Monroy, Alexandre Lima, Amarjit Singh, Jackichand Singh, Isaac Vanmalsawma, Mohammad Mobashir, Jitendra Singh, Gaurab, Manisana Singh, Harsha Parui, Gorachand Mamdi, Billu Teli

Forwards: Nerijus Valskis, William Lalnunfela, John Fitzgerald, David Grande, Sapam Kennedy, Bhupender Singh, Aniket Jadhav

Major League Cricket: The Knight Riders Group becomes the stakeholders in U.S. domestic cricket

It seems like history is in the making at Major League cricket in U.S.

American Cricket Enterprises had announced that the Knight Riders Group, owners of the Kolkata Knight Riders and Trinbago Knight Riders, had agreed to a significant long-term investment in the future of American cricket as they are now stakeholders in Major League Cricket. Over the last decade, the Knight Riders Group has become a household name in T20 cricket due to their sustained success on the pitch.

credits Kolkata Knight Riders Twitter

The Kolkata Knight Riders are two-time Indian Premier League champions and one of the most popular sports franchises in the world of domestic cricket. Following their 2014 IPL Championship, the Knight Riders became owners of the Trinidad & Tobago T20 franchise in the Caribbean Premier League in the year 2015.

Since then, the Trinbago Knight Riders have gone on to win the CPL Championship four times in the last six seasons, including a record-setting unbeaten championship season in 2020. This investment by the Knight Riders Group, which is led by Bollywood superstar, Shah Rukh Khan, along with Juhi Chawla & her husband Jay Mehta, is part of a strategic long-term investment in the future of cricket in the United States.

Major League cricket hub will be set up in Texas
Grand Prairie , Texas is set to be new cricket hub for cricket in the US (credits USA Cricket)

In addition to their expertise in franchise cricket, their vast experience in content creation & production had brought the worlds of cricket and entertainment further together. 

The Bollywood star commented on the long-term agreement saying, “For several years now, we have been expanding the Knight Riders brand globally and closely watching the potential for T20 cricket in the USA. We are convinced that Major League Cricket has all the pieces in place to execute on its plans and we look forward to making our partnership an enormous success in the coming years.”

Mr. Venky Mysore, CEO of KKR and Red Chillies Entertainment has said, “We feel fortunate to have been consistently recognized as one of the best franchises in T20 cricket and have become one of the fastest growing sports brands in the world. As T20 cricket expands internationally, we are flattered by the regular inbound requests to play a major role in growing the sport abroad. We have had a keen interest in the developments in the United States and our expansion into the U.S. is consistent with our long-term strategy. We look forward to the new challenge of building cricket in the world’s most sophisticated sports and media market and we believe that we can bring a huge amount of expertise to help make Major League Cricket realize the potential that it undoubtedly has”

On the behalf of American Cricket Enterprises and Major League Cricket, Sameer Mehta and Vijay Srinivasan said, “We are delighted to partner with the Knight Riders Group in this historic partnership. By adding the Knight Riders Group to our family of world-class and diverse investors, this investment into the future of Major League Cricket is a huge validation of our vision for the new league, and we are particularly excited to have such an iconic cricketing brand onboard with us.


As USA Cricket’s official partner in developing a professional T20 league in America, we have a shared vision to bring world-class professional cricket to the world’s largest sports market. The announcement today is a significant step forward in showing the potential of the American market, and we are delighted to have the backing and expertise of the Knight Riders Group to help us achieve this vision.” Major League Cricket will deliver the highest quality professional T20 cricket for U.S. cricket fans and will gradually help in increasing the fan base of U.S. cricket.

The league will feature top international players from the U.S. and around the world, underpinned by a focus on pathways to develop a homegrown player pool for USA Cricket and the league. Through this initiative, we may see U.S. national team competing in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2027 as it will be enforcing the passion of cricket among the youngsters and people of U.S. to grow.

Mumbai City FC VS SC East Bengal : Can Fowler outsmart Lobera?

Mumbai City FC host newcomers SC East Bengal tonight for the first time ever at the GMC Bambolin Stadium.

SC East Bengal are currently at the bottom of the points table with a match in hand, after the defeat against their arch rivals ATK Mohun Bagan. Although East Bengal played really well in the Kolkata Derby but they couldn’t manage to resist the attacking threat posed by their opponents.

SC East Bengal FC vice captain Anthony Pilkington

SC East Bengal able to resist the attack of ATK Mohun Bagan in the first half very well but failed to do the same in the second phase of the game considering two goals in the starting and the dying moments of the the second half. Also SC East Bengal impressed everyone with their positional play and their passing.

They completed a lot more passes against ATK Mohun Bagan and their passing accuracy was also on point. It wouldn’t be wrong to say that SC East Bengal would gave in everything they had in that game but couldn’t go pass Arindam and capitalise and score past him.

It will be an interesting fixture tonight as City Football Group team Mumbai City FC will play The Red and Golds and the fans would be excited for such a high voltage game.

Hero ISL 2020-21 : FC Goa lack creativity, NorthEast maintain defensive discipline as both the teams share spoils

The 4th consecutive draw in the Hero Indian Super League saw FC Goa and Northeast United FC share a point each courtesy of two first half goals.

Starting XI :


FC Goa :

Juan Ferrando surprised everyone as he chose to start with 3 overseas players in the attack. Jorge Ortiz Mendoza made a comeback to th starting XI to replace Redeem who was out due a 1 match suspension.

Nawaz (GK), Seriton, Ivan, Dohling, Savior, Edu, Lenny, Brandon, Alberto, Ortiz, Angulo

Northeast United FC :

Gerard Nus preferred early rotations as Provat Lakra, Idrissa Sylla and Britto PM got their first start of the season in place of Ashutosh Mehta, Kwesi Appiah and Ninthoi respectively. Lalengmawia was handed the captain’s armband.

Subhasish (GK), Lakra, Fox, Lambot, Gurjinder, Lalengmawia, Camara, Britto, Fanai, Luis, Sylla

Predictibly it was FC Goa who had the lion’s share of the ball, thanks to team’s midfield. A high intensity game began with an end to end action. Jorge Ortiz Mendoza registered the first shot on target of the game in the 5th minute but Subhashish Roy Chowdhury had it covered. A few seconds later Jorge released a shot through his right foot but Dylan Fox came at rescue for the Highlanders.

Northeast United looked to ‘too dangerous’ whenever they got near the opposition’s box through counter attacks from the flanks. In the 34th minute, a deflection from Edu Bedia found Sylla and the Guinean striker missed the target by inches.

3 minutes later, Northeast started a move, Lalengmawia found Britto who was clear on the right flank and the former Mohun Bagan forward delivered a great ball into the box towards Sylla who was brought down into the box by Ivan Gonzalez and the referee pointed to the spot. Idrissa Sylla converted the penalty in the first attempted but it has to retaken as Fanai entered the box before the kick was taken. Northeast United’s number 11 opened the scoring on the night as Northeast led 1-0.

However, FC Goa did not let Northeast maintain their lead, a brilliant pass from Brandon into the box and the man on the end of it was Igor Angulo who brought things back on level terms. The injury time of the first half saw both the teams with an attempt each. Brandon’s pass found Igor who headed wide. Mohammad Nawaz was brought into action courtesy of a fine free kick by Luis Machado in what was the last move of the first half.

Both the teams looked determined after the break but it was FC Goa who made the first move. A cross through the left flank again found Igor Angulo but yet again the Spanish target man headed wide. Jorge Ortiz Mendoza came in with long range effort but it was nothing to worry for the Highlanders disciplined defense.

From Northeast United FC it was Lalrempuia Fanai who attempted a long ranger but missed it altogether. With 10 minutes to play in the regulation time, Northeast United were awarded a free kick and Luis Machado once again made Nawaz react quickly as a free kick on target was denied by the FC Goa goalkeeper.

Alberto Noguera made the last attempt to find a goal in the match in the dying minutes that was denied by the woodwork. A solid display of heroic defending and some possession based football saw both the teams share a point each.

Hero of the Match :

Lalengmawia
The Indian Wonderkid had a night to remember as he became the youngest ever player to captain a Hero ISL side. He was present all over the pitch and displayed some fine skills in the middle of the park.

ISL 2020-21 Kerala Blasters vs Chennaiyin FC: It’s time for Southern Derby

It’s the South Indian derby! Chennaiyin FC take on the Kerala Blasters today at the GMC stadium which promises to be an exciting event.

Kerala Blasters players during training

Chennaiyin FC will be looking to register their second win in as many matches while The Tuskers are still waiting for their 1st win of the new campaign.


HEAD TO HEAD:


The last time around these two teams it was a goalfest with Chennaiyin putting 6 past Kerala. Chennaiyin lead on the overall head to head as well with 6 wins in 14 encounters against the men in yellow.

Key Battle:


JAKUB SYLVESTR vs GARY HOOPER
Well Gary Hooper did score in his last outing but he also missed a glorious chance which could have secured three points for his team. This time he will need to improve his finishing if Kerala want to have any chance in winning against Chennai based team.


Hooper’s counterpart Sylvestr didn’t score against Jamshedpur but he created 3 chances for his teammates. This time around he’ll look to turn scorer from creator and find the net for the 1st time in India.



Squads:



Chennaiyin FC

Goalkeepers: Revanth BY, Vishal Kaith, Karanjit Singh, Samik Mitra.

Defenders: Lalchhuanmawia Fanai, Enes Sipovic, Reagan Singh, Eli Sabia, Jerry Lalrinzuala, Remi, Balaji Ganesan, Aqib Nawab, Deepak Tangri

Midfielders: Fatkhullo Fatkhuloev, Thoi Singh, Anirudh Thapa, Memo Moura, Lallianzuala Chhangte, Rafael Crivellaro, Abhijit Sarkar, Pandiyan Sinivasan, Germanpreet Singh, Dhanpal Ganesh, Edwin Vanspaul.

Forwards: Jakub Sylvestr, Aman Chetri, Rahim Ali, Esmael Goncalves.

Kerala Blasters FC


Goalkeepers: Albino Gomes, Bilal Husain Khan, Prabhsukhan Singh Gill, Muheet Khan.

Defenders: Costa Nhamoinesu, Nishu Kumar, Bakary Kone, Jessel Carneiro, Sandeep Singh, Abdul Hakku, Lalruatthara

Midfielders: Sergio Cidoncha, Sahal Abdul Samad, Vicente Gomez, Seityasen Singh, Rahul KP, Givson Singh, Lalthathanga Khawlhring, Yondrembem Denechandra, Nongdamba Naorem, Arjun Jayaraj, Ayush Adhikari, Jeakson Singh, Prasanth Karuthadathkuni, Ritwik Das, Rohit Kumar

Forwards: Gary Hooper, Jordan Murray, Facundo Pereyra, Naorem Mahesh Singh, Shaiborlang Kharpan.

Hero ISL 7 Bengaluru FC vs Hyderabad FC Match Preview: Cuadrat’s men eye first win against upbeat Nizams

Manuel Marquez’s men will look to build on their win over Odisha FC in their opening match tonight in the Matchweek 2 of 11 of Hero ISL 7.

Hyderabad Fc players train ahead of their ISL match against Bengaluru FC

It’s only been one match for them in the Indian Super League but Hyderabad FC are already close to bettering their stats from last season. They’ve already got half the number of wins and one more clean sheet! But as they prepare to take on Bengaluru FC at the Fatorda Stadium on Saturday, coach Manuel Marquez knows it’s important to build on their 1-0 win against Odisha.

Bengaluru come into this game on the back of a frustrating 2-2 draw against FC Goa. Coach Carles Cuadrat will be demanding an immediate response from his team after they wasted a two-goal lead in their first game.

“Against Hyderabad, we have another plan and I am sure all the players are important this season,” stated the Bengaluru coach, who added that his side had taken full advantage of six-day preparation period.

The presence of Joao Victor and Odei Onaindia in Hyderabad’s defence and custodian Subrata Paul, who has 27 clean sheets in ISL, will make it difficult for Bengaluru to score. The latter doesn’t have the best scoring record against Hyderabad — they’ve only scored two goals in two games.

Liston Colaco impressed for the Nizams coming on as a second-half substitute against Odisha and Marquez hinted the Goa-born could make it to the starting eleven. “There are possibilities of him (Liston) starting after what he did in the previous game. He is an important player for the team,” he said.

“We watched their victory against Odisha and there is no denying, they have a lot of positives. I am expecting a tough game with a team that has a lot to win and not so much to lose. It will be interesting” added Cuadrat.

While the former champions have no injury concerns ahead of the game, Francisco Sandaza will not be available for Hyderabad.

Hero ISL 2020-21 : Idrissa Sylla’s goal spoils the party for Kerala Blasters as both the teams share a point each

The qoute “Football is unpredictable” makes so much sense after the matchday 7 of Hero ISL 2020-21. Northeast United’s 100th Hero ISL game saw a dominant Northeast United FC manage a point from a striding Kerala Blasters FC.

The Highlanders kicked off the game in the first half but Kerala looked appealing. Northeast United showed alot of respect to their opponent in the first half and were punished. Kerala Blasters were awarded a set piece following a foul from Gurjinder on Seityasen Singh just outside the penalty box.

The former Northeast United FC winger delivered a looping ball inside the box and Kerala Blasters FC’s skipper Sergio Cidoncha netted in a clinical header around the 6th minute mark. In the 23rd minute Garry Hooper smartly intercepted a slow back pass from Khassa Camara and started a move, he passed the ball to Cido and made a run inside the box. Sergio Cidoncha did deliver a great ball inside the box but the English Man failed to convert the golden chance and hit it over the crossbar.

6 minutes later it was Ashutosh Mehta on the right flank who took a shot from a pretty decent angle but it went wide. A few minutes later Khassa Camara beautifully intercepted a poor pass from Costa near the penalty box and almost scored the equaliser but Sergio Cidoncha came at rescue for the blasters.

Kerala Blasters players celebrating

Just before half-time Kerala Blasters won a corner and there was huddle inside the box and Dylan Fox stood tall against Kerala as he cleared two back to back headers on target but things took a different turn and Kerala Blasters were awarded a controversial penalty. Garry Hooper made no mistake in putting the ball past Subhasish Roy Chowdhury and added his first goal to his tally in the ISL.

The Highlanders looked raring to go in the second half and did start really well. Northeast United FC were rewarded for all the hard shift they have put it as Kwesi Appiah scored his second goal of the season that bought a different level of energy within the team.

Northeast kept knocking at the door and in the 66th minute Lalengmawia was brought down inside the box by Jessel Carneiro and the referee pointed to the spot. Kwesi looked calm but unlucky missed the spot kick and hit at the Crossbar and the side from Kochi dominated the scoreline.

Both the teams made a couple a changes with Luis Machado and Idrissa Sylla replacing Federico Gallego and Kwesi Appiah respectively for Northeast United FC. For Kerala Blasters Jordan Murray and Prasanth came in for Sergio Cidoncha and Puitea.

A long ball into the box found Idrissa Sylla but the former Queens Park Rangers striker headed wide in the 83rd minute. Northeast United FC looked determined and kept pushing bodies forward but lacked the cutting edge in the final third of the pitch.

We all thought Kerala Blasters are going home with all three points but this match had alot left in it. Gurjinder Kumar delivered a great long ball in the box and found Sylla. The Guinean target man received the ball through his chest and displayed some absolute masterclass of his finishing. Northeast United FC’s Number 11 bought things on level terms and handed his team a point in the dying minutes of the match.

Hero of the Match : Dylan Fox
The Aussie centre back was outstanding throughout the match and deservingly bagged the Hero of the match award. He finished the match with a passing accuracy of 88% and stood tall at the right time and at the right place.

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Diego Maradona: The “Ballirete Cósmico” is no more

Argentinian commentator Victor Hugo Morales sobs with joy as he screams on the microphone, “Cosmic kite, what planet are you from that you can leave so many Englishmen in your wake?… Thank you God! For football! For Diego Maradona! For these tears! For this 2-0!” This epochal commentary can still bring tears to a heartfelt, devoted football admirer.

A boy from the city of Buenos Aires went onto become the ‘barillete cósmico’ and eventually conquered both the world of football and the hearts of all football fans across the globe. The story of this boy started in the year 1979 when at a mere age of 19, he won the FIFA U-19 World Cup with his nation.

In the year of 1982, for the first time, Diego Maradona got the chance to debut for the senior national team in the FIFA World Cup 1982 and impressed the world with his dazzling skills, blazing speed, rock-solid physicality and an urge to win every match. He was a born superstar of the game. His famous dribble against Belgium is still remembered as one of the finest dribbles in the World Cup history.

But, Italy defeated Argentina 2-1, thus leaving the Argentines a do or die game against Brazil. Trailing 3-0, Brazilian player Joao Batista da Silva fouled his teammate which to everyone’s shock went unnoticed. The incident resulted in a heated moment with the wonder boy Maradona being shown a red card. From that match, Maradona earned the tag of ‘Innocent Devil’.

In 1986, the FIFA World Cup that was held in Mexico is widely regarded as a fairytale for the Innocent Devil. But the semi-final match of Argentina against England has a special place in everyone’s heart. Six minutes into the second half, the wonder boy initiated an attack into the heart of the England defense, before laying the ball off to a teammate and surging forward. The ball was lobbed back in his direction by a panicked England defender and Diego leaped up in front of the goalkeeper to seemingly head the ball into the net. English players protested vehemently, and with just cause.

Somehow the match officials had missed what most people had seen — the vertically challenged boy had actually reached up and punched the ball into the net. But, no one could forget what happened just four minutes later. The Argentine no.10 received the ball a few yards behind the halfway line and produced a pirouette which left three defenders bamboozled. He then surged along the right hand touchline at pace, before somehow accelerating even more, slaloming past more English players as he hurdled towards goal.

Diego Maradona after winning the world cup
MEXICO CITY, MEXICO – JUNE 29: Diego Maradona of Argentina holds the World Cup trophy after defeating West Germany 3-2 during the 1986 FIFA World Cup Final match at the Azteca Stadium on June 29, 1986 in Mexico City, Mexico. (Photo by Archivo El Grafico/Getty Images)

Entering the box, Maradona faked another defender, left the goalkeeper sprawled on the ground with a jink, then clipped the ball into the back of the net. Under his captaincy, Argentina beat West Germany in the final and eventually lifted the World Cup for Argentina. This wonder boy clinched the accolade for FIFA Player of the Year four times and was even awarded the Player of the Decade.

This wonder boy is non other than, Diego Armando Maradona. The born great. The Prince of the world’s best sport. But shockingly, the Prince left all of us at a mere age of 60 with no words left to say. An untimely demise which the world will never be able to cope with.

An idol, an inspiration, a legend, an utter genius or whatever you might say, each and every word seems to be not up to the mark for defining the late player’s class. He had faced all transitions of mortal life, from the best of the best to the worse of the worst. In 1994, he got ruled out of the FIFA World Cup after he failed to clear the doping test.

Diego Maradona’s addiction to drugs costed him his name being taken off from the FIFA legends’ list. But still, the famous smile of Diego remained evergreen in toughest of times. Many living legends of the game are broken with the untimely demise of the Argentine football legend.

Brazilian legend, Pele tweeted, “What sad news. I lost a great friend and the world lost a legend. There is still much to be said, but for now, may God give strength to family members. I hope one day we can play football together above the sky.”

English legend, Gary Lineker also tweeted a heartfelt message, “Reports from Argentina that Diego Armando Maradona has died. By some distance the best player of my generation and arguably the greatest of all time. After a blessed but troubled life, hopefully he’ll finally find some comfort in the hands of God.” It’s still difficult to gulp the truth that, the Greatest Footballer of All Time is no more.

Here, is a small tribute to the Late Prince of Football from our team,

“Espy, he is approaching anon, ushering his indemnifies with self, to reimburse everyone for what he might have done to them during their pulse in the orb. But who said you were the prince, Diego? Didn’t those mortal beings know the contrariety of a prince to the Numen of football.

The Demiurge of Argentine soccer can’t die. Until the time comes when people will stop playing the most beautiful game on this planet, your name will be echoed in the stands all across the world, every child who dreams of being a footballer will chant your name before stepping on to the pitch, your name will be remembered until people stop uttering the number 1,986.

Hope you have started your devising to score Goal of the Century in the soccer Coliseum of Nirvana and let the commentators in The Promised Land scream on their microphones and cry with happiness when you will find the ball at the back of the net. Adiós Diego Armando Maradona.”

ISL 2020-21 SC East Bengal Team Analysis : How will the Red and Gold Army perform?

After making it to the Indian Super League this season, East Bengal sought to make an impact on the Indian Top flight and establish their supremity in the biggest stage of Indian Club football.

East Bengal coach Robbie Fowler
Credits- SC East Bengal Media

We take a look at SC East Bengal’s squad for the 2020-21 ISL season, and analyse it’s pros and cons, and take a look at a few other aspects.

Last Season’s Performance:

As said earlier, East Bengal have newly joined the Hero Indian Super League, following the footsteps of their biggest predators Mohun Bagan, who merged with two times ISL champions ATK to form a new entity called ATK Mohun Bagan.

East Bengal previously played in the I League, the 2019-20 season was a bit tacky for the club, as their biggest rivals Mohun Bagan overpowered them and won the league. Even though the season wasn’t completed due to the pandemic and had 4 matches to spare, Mohun Bagan 16 points ahead of runners up East Bengal with huge goal difference, which made it practically impossible for East Bengal to overshadow the Mariners.

Transfer Window dealings:

SC East Bengal, had a slightly quite transfer activity this season. They had a full pool of Indian Players but the foreign signings was much anticipated by the fans. They roped in Robbie Fowler as their Head Coach, who himself was a quite illustrious striker himself.

Ins:

Robbie Fowler’s biggest signing this season was Anthony Pilkington and their other signings include the likes of Daniel Fox, Aaron Amadi-Holloway, Jacques Maghoma, Ville Matti Steinmann and Scott Neville.

His domestic player signings included the likes of prolific players such as Narayan Das and Jeje Lalpekhlua just to name some. While they haven’t signed their 7th foreign player yet but according to sources it is most likely to be Joe Garner who is set to join SC East Bengal from Wigan Athletic.

Outs:

Many players fell out of the wishlist of coach Robbie Fowler and they are Pintu Mahata who has joined Sudeva FC, and Right Back Rino Anto has been left out of the squad with the likes of Cavin Lobo, Lalrindika Ralte, Omid Singh and Jaime Santos. Though many players who have contract was told to find a suitable club they want to join and if not they will be kept in reserve squad for playing in other tournaments like Calcutta Football League.

Credits – SC East Bengal Media

Strengths:

East Bengal’s midfield is their strongest point with the likes of Anthony Pilkington, Jacques Maghoma, Matti Steinmann. The presence of Robbie Fowler will make sure that the players are motivated always and given his managerial record in A- League where he managed Brisbane Roar which was a 9th placed team and after taking charge he finished 4th with them.

Weakness:

If this team had a weakness then it surely would be the time span they had to set up a formidable team which would look good on paper. The chemistry buildup will play a huge part in the season. Their counterpart ATK Mohun Bagan already had a settled team because most of their players were already playing for ATK FC before the merger happened.

Formation:

3-4-2-1

Robbie Fowler prefers to play this formation and also he prefers to play possesion based football with 3 defenders at the back and full backs. This helps his team to launch counter attack through both the flanks and score goals as a result. This play style of Robbie Fowler will be a potential threat for East Bengal to launch upon their opponents when required.

Players to watch out for:

Anthony Pilkington: A formidable player with an experience of playing Premier League football for three seasons. With experience like this will be surely a threat for the opponents as he possesses such calibre.

Daniel Fox: Another experienced player Fox has also played in the English Premier League for Burnley and Southampton, before a stint with Wigan Athletic and then Nottingham Forest.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Debjit Majumder, Rafique Ali, Mirshad Michu, Sankar Roy

Defenders: Abhishek Ambekar, Anil Chawan, Daniel Fox, Gurtej Singh, Lalramchullova, Mohamed Irshad, Nayaran Das, N Rohen Singh, Novin Gurung, Rana Gharami, Samad Mallick, Scott Neville, Pritam Singh

Midfielders: Bikash Jairu, Eugeneson Lyngdoh, Haobam Singh, Jacques Maghoma, Loken Meitei, Milan Singh, Mohammed Rafique, Sehnaj Singh, Surchandra Singh, Matti Steinmann, Wahengbam Luwan, Yumnam Singh, Anthony Pilkington, CK Vineeth, Harmanpreet Singh

Forwards: Balwant Singh, Girik Khosla, Jeje Lalpekhlua, Aaron Amadi Holloway


India tour of Australia 2020: Full Squads, Schedule and an engaging winter upcoming

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and Cricket Australia (CA) have announced their teams for india vs Australia . India announced the squad for the complete series that involves 3 T20 3-ODI and 4 match test series.

India tour of Australia : There was a big setback for team India,as Rohit Sharma is down with injury and it has been in a decision whether he would be included in he team or not.

India's spin duo chahal and Kuldeep
Credits – BCCI

As of now KL Rahul and Kuldeep Yadav have returned to the India test squad. Mohammed Siraj has also been appointed for the four match series in December – January as the replacement of Ishant Sharma.

India vs Australia, ODI Schedule

1st ODI: SCG, Sydney | November 27 | 9:10 AM IST

2nd ODI: SCG, Sydney | November 29 | 9:10 AM IST

3rd ODI: Manuka Oval | Canberra, December 2 | 9:10 AM IST

Team India ODI squad: 

Virat Kohli (Captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Shubman Gill, KL Rahul (vice-captain & wicket-keeper), Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Mayank Agarwal, Ravindra Jadeja, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohd. Shami, Navdeep Saini, Shardul Thakur, Sanju Samson (wicketkeeper).

credits – BCCI

Australia ODI squad:

Aaron Finch (Captain), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Moises Henriques, Marnus Labuschagne, Glenn Maxwell, Daniel Sams, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade (wicketkeeper), David Warner, Adam Zampa.

Australia will play India in three one day international sin Sydney and Canberra from Nov 27th to 4th December.

India vs Australia, T20I Schedule

1st T20I: Manuka Oval | Canberra, December 4 | 1:40 PM IST

2nd T20I: SCG, Sydney | December 6 | 1:40 PM IST

3rd T20I: SCG, Sydney | December 8 | 1:40 PM IST

Team India T20I squad: 

Virat Kohli (Captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Mayank Agarwal, KL Rahul (vice-captain and wicketkeeper), Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Sanju Samson (wicket-keeper), Ravindra Jadeja, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Navdeep Saini, Deepak Chahar, T Natarajan.

Australia T20 Squad: 

Aaron Finch (Captain), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Moises Henriques, Marnus Labuschagne, Glenn Maxwell, Daniel Sams, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade (wicketkeeper), David Warner, Adam Zampa.

India vs Australia, Test Schedule

1st Test: Adelaide Oval, Adelaide | December 17 – December 21 | 9:30 AM IST

2nd Test: MCG, Melbourne | December 26 – December 30 | 9:30 AM IST

3rd Test: SCG, Sydney | January 7 – January 11 | 9:30 AM IST

4th Test: The Gabba, Brisbane | January 15 – Januray 19 | 9:30 AM IST

Team India Test squad: 

Virat Kohli (Captain), Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, Prithvi Shaw, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (vice-captain), Hanuma Vihari, Shubman Gill, Wriddhiman Saha (wicket-keeper), Rishabh Pant (wicketkeeper), Jasprit Bumrah, Mohd. Shami, Umesh Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, R. Ashwin, Mohd. Siraj.

Australia Test Squad: 

Tim Paine (Captain, wicketkeeper), Sean Abbott, Joe Burns, Pat Cummins, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Michael Neser, James Pattinson, Will Pucovski, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson, Matthew Wade, David Warner.

As the current situation arises the pandemic has taken over every thing but still the game is on and hoping that the test match 2020 would be a great event this year as the IPL matches has been . The players are well trained this year so it may be a powerful show as the best players are now in the field.

Northeast United FC will invest heavily in youth and academy

Northeast United FC are well aware of the qualities that the young guns of the Northeast own. They too believe in ‘if you want to succeed tomorrow start working from today’ and have taken a their first step forward.

The Highlanders will invest heavily in grassroots. The Club’s focus is to build a structure that will scout, nurture and groom talent from the region that can feed into the first team. The Club has already recruited some top coaches
and scouts and is laying out the foundations for a comprehensive academy.

Northeast United coaches discuss

With this as a core focus, Northeast United FC’s Assistant Coach and Head of Academy Khalid Jamil will be leading this effort. Khalid has been an instrumental part of selecting the Indian talent for this season’s first team squad and the Club wants him to continue to identify and mentor youth footballers back home.

An added advantage for the Guwahati based club is that Khalid Jamil is familiar with the region, he will be responsible for strengthening the existing coaching setup as well as improving our independent scouting network in the Northeast. This initiative by the club will provide all the kids a platform to showcase their ability. The club looks forward to unearthing many more stars.

The step taken by the club will not only be beneficial to club but will also benifit the future of Indian football as Northeast is known as the factory of quality footballers in the country.

Hero ISL 2020-21 Match Preview: A high-scoring match on cards between attacking sides as FC Goa host Mumbai City FC tonight

Stunned by NorthEast United in their opening match, Mumbai City FC coach Sergio Lobera will be up against his former side FC Goa this wednesday night at Fatorda Stadium.

Juan Ferrando’s FC Goa are set to face Sergio Lobera’s Mumbai City in a 2020-21 Indian Super League (ISL) clash at the Fatorda stadium in Goa, on Wednesday evening. With two attack-minded sides going up against each other, the match is expected to produce free-flowing football.

Mumbai City Head Coach Sergio Lobera (credits – Mumbai City fC twitter)

For Mumbai City head coach Sergio Lobera, it will be the first time he will be up against his former club which he guided to League Winners Shield last season and to the group stage of AFC Champions League.

For new FC Goa coach Ferrando, who turned the game around against Bengaluru FC with two brilliant second-half substitutions, worrying about what the opponent can do is a waste of time.

credits – FC Goa twitter

There will be the additional narrative to track on the fielod as former Goa players Mandar Rao Dessai, Hugo Boumous and Mourtada Fall could look to inflict pain on the home side.

The specialty about tonight’s game:

The match is expected to see a lot of passes. Lobera has long been known for getting his players to spray the ball all around the pitch. During his stint as FC Goa coach, he averaged 535 passes per match.

credits – Mumbai City FC twitter

Despite losing 0-1 to NorthEast United, 10-men Mumbai City had more than 60 per cent possession and completed 451 passes to their opponents’ 217. No team has passed more in the league so far.

One team has come close though – Juan Ferrando’s FC Goa. In the 2-2 draw against Bengaluru FC, they completed 448 passes, more than twice what their opponents had managed.

The key player fans will miss tonight:

The Mumbai City coach will be without suspended Ahmed Jahouh, arguably his most influential player, but believes his team can compensate for that.

Moroccan player Jahouh was sent off with the referee showing a direct red card for his first-half reckless tackle on NorthEast United FC player Khassa Camara in the match on November 21.

Squads:

FC Goa

Goalkeepers: Mohammad Nawaz, Naveen Kumar, Shubham Dhas, Antonio D’Silva

Defenders: Sarineo Fernandes, Aiban Dohling, Ivan Gonzalez, James Donachie, Leander D’Cunha, Mohamed Ali, Sanson Pereira, Saviour Gama, Seriton Fernandes

Credits – FC Goa twitter

Midfielders: Alberto Noguera, Alexander Jesuraj, Brandon Fernandes, Edu Bedia, Flan Gomes, Jorge Mendoza, Lenny Rodrigues, Nestor Dias, Phrangki Buam, Princeton Rebello, Redeem Tlang, Seiminlen Doungel

Forwards: Aaren D’Silva, Devendra Murgaonkar, Igor Angulo, Ishan Pandita, Makan Chothe

Mumbai City FC

Goalkeepers: Amrinder Singh, Nishit Shetty, Vikram Singh, Phurba Lachenpa

Defenders: Amey Ranawade, Valpuia, Mourtada Fall, Mehtab Singh, Mandar Rao Dessai, Tondonba Singh, Mohamad Rakip, Sarthak Golui

FC Goa coach instructing his player

Midfielders: Ahmed Jahouh, Bidyananda Singh, Bipin Singh, Hernan Santana, Raynier Fernandes, Rowllin Borges, Sourav Das, Hugo Boumous, Cy Goddard, Asif Khan, Farukh Choudhary, Vignesh Dakshinamurthy, Vikram Partap Singh, Pranjal Bhumij

Forwards: Adam Le Fondre, Bartholomew Ogbeche

What to expect from Match 6?

It’s difficult to predict how this game of football will shape up. But when FC Goa take on Mumbai City FC in the Hero Indian Super League (ISL) Season 7 at the Fatorda Stadium on Wednesday, one thing is for sure. There will be a lot of passes!

Hero ISL 2020-21: The Juggernauts face a disappointing start to the season at the hands of Nizams

While Odisha just missed the play-offs spot in the ISL last season, while Hyderabad FC finished at the bottom of the table. But, on the contrary, the new season has marked a new beginning for the Nizams.

credits Hyderabad FC media

On matchday 4 of Hero ISL season 7, Odisha FC lost 1-0 to Hyderabad FC at GMC Bambolim stadium, with Aridane Santana converting a penalty for Hyderabad. Both the teams were playing with great composure inclusive of build-up, possession game and quick counters.

Odisha FC players before their first isl match of the season
credits Odisha fc media

Odisha FC’s Brazillian duo of Marcelinho and Diego Mauricio displayed some great sense of gameplay but failed to find the ball at the back of the net while Manuel Onwu’s performance wasn’t so impressive. Three Indian players from Odisha FC made their debut yesterday and they seemed to have a disappointing ISL debut, definitely a one to forget. Also, this was Hyderabad’s first ever clean sheet in their history of Hero ISL. Odisha FC’s Head Coach, Stuart Baxter isn’t happy even with his team’s performance.

credits Odisha fc media

In the post match conference, he said that, “The players suffered a frustration due to the conceding of a penalty and it was clearly visible on their faces which made them commit mistakes.” Hopefully, the boys of Odisha will be working much more harder this time and they should also be able to cope up with the disappointment of a defeat in the very first match of the season.

Odisha FC will be facing Jamshedpur FC in their next match on sunday, 29th November.

ISL 2020: Preview- Jamshedpur FC battle it out against Chennaiyin FC for all three points, tonight.

The stage is all set for a mouth watering contest between Jamshedpur FC and Chennaiyin FC, that witnesses two ISL giants, both with the aspiration to start the season on the right foot, battle it out at the Tilak Maidan, in matchday 5 of the 7th edition of Hero Indian Super League.

Picture Credit – Chennaiyin FC Twitter

The two time ISL champions Chennaiyin FC would go all in to bag all three points and start their season on a good note. But it ain’t gonna be so easy for the Super Machans to fulfill this desire, as they face their coach from the last season, Owen Coyle who wrote an absolute fairy tale with Chennaiyin FC last season after he took over the club in the middle of the 2019-20 season, when the situation of the team was not good at all.

Also they are going to face their star striker and their highest goal scorer from the last season, the Lithuanian Nerijus Valskis who was on complete fire last season and was one of the biggest reasons why chennaiyin FC finished second in the last season.

Blast from the past:

Last season the clash between these two respective teams saw the two teams sharing points with the final score of 1-1 in their first meeting. In the second meeting when the red miners made the trip to the southern coast, the match ended 4-1, in favour of the supermachans. In fact the six games played between these two teams in the last three seasons, saw 3 draws and a win ratio of 2:1, with Chennai FC having the upper hand.

Chennaiyin FC:

After a fairy tail 2019-20 ISL season, in which after a tacky start to the season, the two time ISL champions made an incredible comeback to finish fourth in the Indian super league and qualify for the playoffs.This season though they have let go some of the big names from their last season’s squad, but they have also made some commendable transfer and have managed to build a strong squad on paper.

Picture Credit – Chennaiyin FC Twitter

On the goal they have retained their previous Season’s goalkeeper Vishal Kaith. Defensively the team is really strong, with the likes of players such as Eli Sabia who is an absolute beast and also contributes attackingly, Enes Sipovic who is the first bosnian to ever play in the Indian top flight, the wing backs Jerry Lalrinzuala, Edwin Sydney Vanspaul and Reagan Singh have also shiwn their capability in the ISL before and have huge expectations on their shoulders and are very unlikely to be easily exploited.

The team also has a very strong midfield consisting of players such as Memo, Gurjinder Singh, Crivellaro who was on absolute fire last season, Chhangte, Anirudh Thapa. Whereas Isma and Jakub Sylvestr take in charge of the team’s attack.

Jamshedpur FC:

Last season was a disappointing campaign for the red miners, as their star players where ruled out due to injuries and they therefore finished 8th in the points table, which was there was position in the points table in the three seasons they played in the Indian Super League.

TP Rehnesh will be the preferred goalkeeper for the club this season. Peter Hartley, Narender Gahlot, Jitendra Singh, Ricky Lallawmawma,Laldinliana Renthlei make up the defence.

Jamshedpur FC vs Chennaiyin FC stats
Picture Credit – Jamshedpur FC Twitter

Their most valuable defender Stephen Eze would be missing this contest due to injury. Jamshedpur in defence will rely on young and local players tonight which is a great thing as the players will get the opportunity to perform on the big stage.The midfield is likely to be managed by players such as Amarjit Singh, Alex who is the club’s most valuable signing this season, with a transfer value of ₹4.1 crore.Mornoy who was one of the brightest players for Jamshedpur FC last season, Issac Vanmalsawma, Nicholas Fitzgerald who has plenty of experience in the A-League, Jackichand Singh.The attacking duties have been assigned to David Grande and Nerijus Valskis who has the highest amount of expectation, because of his performance last season where he finished the league as the joint top scorer.

Probable Starting 11:

Chennaiyin FC – Vishal Kaith; Reagan Singh, Eli Sabia, Enes Sipovic, Jerry Lalrinzuala; Edwin Sydney Vanspaul, Anirudh Thapa; Esmael Goncalves, Rafael Crivellaro, Lallianzuala Chhangte; Jakub Sylvestr.

Jamshedpur FC- TP Rehenesh; Laldinliana Renthlei, Peter Hartley, Narendar Gahlot, Ricky Lallawmawma; Aitor Monroy, Amarjit Singh ; Jackichand Singh, Isaac Vanmalsawma, Alex Lima; Nerijus Valskis

With both teams having extraordinary players and a power packed squad, we can expect nothing more than a cracking and mouthwatering contest when these two teams go head to head tonight.

Bikash Yumnam – “Stay focused, work hard, maintain discipline and be honest everything will fall in place”

“Composed on the ball, a great reader of the game, and capable of excellent, fast, long throw-ins, the teenager has already been earmarked for a quick progression to the full international side,” read The Guardian’s list of top 60 young promising talents describing Bikash Yumnam‘s quality.

The 17 year old defender became the first Indian who made it to The Guardian’s list of top 60 youngsters. We caught up with him for an exclusive chat and here what he had to say.

Q. Who has been your inspiration when did your love for football started?
BY : My Dad always inspired me
.

Upcoming Indian football star Bikash Yumnam

Q. What was the feeling when you made your I-League debut against Neroca FC?
BY : It was an honoured and accomplished feeling when i made my debut which I’ll cherish forever. Unfortunately we weren’t able to get 3 points that day.

Q. You were a part of U-16 squad which reached quarter finals of AFC U-16 Championship in Malaysia. How did it help you in shaping up your career from that point?
BY : The tournament made me believe that I can go further and if work hard I can become better in future. From then on l put my head up and started working staying focused.

Hero ISL 2020-21: Will Odisha FC be able to continue with their Head-to-Head record against Hyderabad FC?

It’s Matchday 4 of the Hero ISL season 7 between the Juggernauts, Odisha FC and the Nizams, Hyderbad FC.

The Bhubaneswar-based side under the guidance of Head Coach Stuart Baxter is all set to start their season-long campaign against Telangana-based club.


Both the teams had joined the Hero ISL last season and eventually had got different outcomes. Odisha FC finished sixth in the table while Hyderabad had a disappointing season being placed at the bottom of the table. However, this is a new season and both the teams have made plenty of changes to their team along with their coaching staff and officials.

This is going to be a different battle for the two teams although Odisha FC has a 2-0 head to head record against Hyderabad FC, Head Coach, Stuart Baxter had said, “Being a professional sportsman, you can’t rely on your past because the past is now history. You should always focus on your present and coming future.”

picture credits ofc media


Having some young and talented players alongside star players like Marcelinho, Diego Mauricio, Onwu and Steven Taylor, Odisha FC will be looking forward to a great beginning under their experienced coaching unit. Players like Vinit Rai, Shubham Sarangi, Nandhakumar Sekar, Jerry Mawihmingthanga, Daniel Lalhlimpuia, Arshdeep Singh, Mohammad Sajid Dhot and Gaurav Bora are now joined by Samuel Lalmuanpuia, Isak Ralte, Kamaljit Singh, Thoiba Singh, Hendry Antonay, Saurabh Meher, George D’Souza, Kamalpreet Singh and others.

This makes the team from the City of Temples one of the strongest sides among the young Indian players, where each one of them possesses the calibre of becoming an asset to the club as well as to Indian football. Odisha FC’s local star Shubham Sarangi said, “The entire team is looking forward to that match and now it is upon us how we perform and get the result. The preparations have been really good. We were in the quarantine for 10 days then we came out and went for training.”

Slowly and gradually we built on our fitness and now we are looking forward to the first game.” And with a leader of Steven Taylor’s calibre, who has played in Premier League for more than 10 years, and with other foreigners like South African international Cole Alexander, prolific ISL star Marcelinho, Brazilian forward Diego Mauricio, Australian defender Jacob Tratt and last year’s Hero Manuel Onwu, the team has got a strong foreign contingent.

Players like midfielder Alexander and centre-back Taylor had played under Coach Baxter before and that experience will be helpful for the team throughout the season as both of them go well with their “Sensei”. Onwu and Marcelinho have the experience of playing in India and they have a great average of scoring goals which is a good sign for Odisha FC. Apart from that, Marcelinho and Kamaljit’s experience of playing for Hyderabad FC last season and knowing many of their players from the sixth edition of Hero ISL will also play a trivial part in the first game.

Odisha FC Captain Steven taylor
Odisha FC Captain Steven Taylor (picture credits – ofc media)

Odisha FC’s Austalian linchpin and Captain, Steven Taylor had qouted, “It’s gonna be exciting for everyone but a different kind of season than that we are used to with no fans in the stadium. This season, I think we will see some surprises. Last year when I was with Wellington, there was a very young side and same again here with some fantastic experienced foreign players who will help the young boys. I am hoping for a fantastic season.”

Hyderabad and Odisha have swapped their forwards from last season and Aridane Santana seems to be the biggest signing for Hyderabad FC after a very successful yet not-so-good season with Odisha FC in the 2019-20 season. Head Coach Manuel Marquez will have to ensure that they give some desired outcomes to cheer for the Nizams’ fans from their very first game itself and for that, Santana will have to play a major role.

The inclusion of former Perth Glory winger Joel Chianese along with midfielder Lluis Sastre, and Odei Onaindia from CD Mirandes has made the club a strong one ahead of the beginning of the season. They have some experienced Indian names like Adil Khan, Souvik Chakrabarti, Laxmikant Kattimani, Halicharan Narzary and Subrata Paul and the Odisha boys will have to face these experienced players of their opposition.

Odisha FC vs Hyderabad FC will kick-off at 7:30 p.m in the evening. It will be played at the Bambolim Stadium behind closed doors.

ISL 2020-21 Highlights : Angulo’s brace guides FC Goa to 2-2 draw against Bengaluru FC

The Sunday Super night of Matchday 3 at Fatorda witnessed both sides share spoils after a 2-2 draw as Igor Angulo scored twice for FC Goa on his debut to snatch a point from the Blues.

FC Goa striker Igor Angulo en route to scoring a brace

Last season’s ISL league phase winners FC Goa kicked off their 2020-21 Indian Super League season by playing host to Bengaluru FC. FC Goa were looking to retain the league champions title and win the tournament for the first time. Bengaluru FC, on the other hand, had a trophyless season for the first time last year and were hoping to get back to winning ways this season.

Bengaluru FC and FC Goa played out an entertaining 2-2 draw at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Fatorda, with three of those goals coming in the second half. The hosts began the game positively and immediately stamped their authority on the encounter. FC Goa maintained possession for large stretches and kept hoping for an opening. However, the first real chance fell to Bengaluru FC and Cleiton Silva in the 27th minute, with the forward making no mistake.

Bengaluru FC doubled their lead in the 57th minute through a Juanan goal. Spanish striker Igor Angulo’s brace helped FC Goa get a point from the opening game. The match ended 2-2. 

Igor’s brace helped FC Goa get one point from the match. But the game also outlined many flaws present in FC Goa which need to be rectified if they are to reach the heights of the previous season. The veteran striker seemed to be on the periphery against Bengaluru FC, especially for two-thirds of the game. However, like many penalty-box predators, he came to life when presented with chances and made the net bulge twice.

Bengaluru FC have been the best team in India with set-pieces in the last few seasons. Today they showed again why they are so dangerous with set pieces. Both their goals today came from set-piece routines. They have also demonstrated how to utilize throw-ins as a weapon, and yesterday it was in full show. They also troubled the Goa defense with their unique corner and free-kick routines. FC Goa, on the other hand, wasted their set-piece chances as they made a hash of things. 

Bengaluru FC have three of the best Indian forwards present in India in the form of Sunil Chhetri, Udanta Singh, and Ashique Kuruniyan. When Bengaluru completed the singing of Ashique Kuruniyan, a lot of people beleived to be the best Indian trio present in any Indian team. Today, with the season’s opening game for Bengaluru FC, a lot of their fans and Indian national team fans hoped for a good showing from the deadly trio. Alas, that wasn’t to happen as the likes of Sunil Chhetri failed to live up to expectations.

At the same time, Ashique did help his team defensively and made at least one crucial block. Sunil Chhetri had a poor game with the Indian team skipper attempting just one shot at goal which was also off target. Udanta had the most flawed game among the trio. He had a poor pass success rate of only 57%. His runs were also something that didn’t trouble the Goa defense much. 

HERO OF THE MATCH : Igor Angulo

The former Polish league top scorer is FC Goa’s replacement for the mighty Ferran Corominas. Having to replace someone like Coro in the Indian Super League is no mean task. Igor had a slow start to the game as he took his time to get used to the surroundings. But in the second half, he showed his true colors with some brilliant runs and then he scored a brace within four minutes to salvage a point for FC Goa.

The inclusion of Brandon Fernandes in the second half looked to be the key to unlocking Igor Angulo. The former Spanish youth team player managed to keep the Bengaluru defenders on their toes at all times and made some brilliant runs which helped his colleagues create space to exploit. 

Hero ISL 2020-21 Match Preview: FC Goa lock horns with Bengaluru FC tonight

It’s the Super Sunday night of Matchday 3 and a chance for all the football fans to witness a breathtaking encounter in Fatorda as FC Goa get ready to host Bengaluru FC.

The second match of the Indian Super League (ISL) 2020-21 season saw Northeast United win 1-0 over 10-man Mumbai City at the Tilak Maidan in Vasco, Goa. Now, after the action-packed Saturday, ISL League Shield winners FC Goa will take on 2018-19 ISL champions Bengaluru FC.

Juan Ferrando’s FC Goa will face Carles Cuadrat’s Bengaluru FC at the Fatorda Stadium tonight. The Hero Indian Super League (ISL) Matchday 3 game between Goa and Bengaluru is scheduled to kick off at 7:30 pm IST.

FC Goa vs Bengaluru FC Head to head

FC Goa have only beaten Bengaluru FC once, and that was in the first meeting between these two teams, when Ferran Corominas scored a hat-trick in a 4-3 win at Fatorda. Since then, Bengaluru FC have beaten FC Goa five times, and drawn once. Last season at Fatorda, these two teams played out a 1-1 draw. Udanta Singh opened the scoring for Bengaluru FC in the second half, but Coro equalised with a late penalty. At the Sree Kanteerava Stadium, a Sunil Chhetri brace inspired Bengaluru FC to a 2-1 win.

Total no. of matches played: 7

Matches won by FC Goa: 1

Matches won by Bengaluru FC: 5

Games Drawn: 1

Highest goal aggregate in a single match: FC Goa 4-3 BFC, 30 November 2017

FC Goa’s biggest victory: FC Goa 4-3 BFC, 30 November 2017

BFC’s biggest victory: BFC 3-0 FC Goa, 21st February 2019

FC Goa

Analysing at the home side first, FC Goa finished last season at the top of the league standings but lost out to Chennaiyin FC in a high-scoring two-legged semi-final with the final score on aggregate ending 5-6. However, with new arrivals this season and the entire tournament being held in Goa, last season’s league toppers will be keen on winning their first ISL title this campaign. Goa were the top scorers last season and are still among the favourites to win the crown this season.

For Goa, Igor Angulo will have to try and fill the boots left behind by Coro, ISL’s all-time top-scorer. Jorge Ortiz and Len Doungel are expected to start on the flanks with Brandon Fernandes set to play the role of a creative midfielder. Ivan Gonzalez is expected to be paired up with James Donachie at the heart of Goa’s defence.

The Goan side faced a mass exodus when their former coach Sergio Lobera moved on to fellow ISL franchise Mumbai City FC and four crucial players – Ahmed Jahouh, Mourtada Fall, Mandar Rao Desai and Hugo Boumous followed suit.

FC Goa players during their training

Bengaluru FC

Bengaluru FC finished last season in third place on the league table and had the best defensive record. However, they lost to eventual champions ATK over the two legs of the semifinal. However, with new additions to their squad this term, the playoff regulars will be hoping for a repeat of the 2018-19 season when won their first ISL title. 

For Bengaluru, Indian icon Sunil Chhetri is set to lead the attack. The Blues have no major injury concerns heading into the game against Goa. The side has managed to retain their key players which will enable their head coach Carles Cuadrat to aim for consistent results. They have the talismanic leader Sunil Chhetri flanked by young Indian stalwarts Udanta Singh and Ashique Kuruniyan. With a strong defence led by Juanan, Bengaluru FC will sure put on a tough fight against the host.

FC Goa vs Bengaluru FC Predicted XI

FC Goa Predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Mohammad Nawaz; Seriton Fernandes, Ivan Gonzalez, James Donachie, Saviour Gama; Edu Bedia, Lenny Rodrigues; Seiminlen Doungel, Brandon Fernandes, Jorge Ortiz Mendoza; Igor Angulo

Bengaluru FC Predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Gurpreet Singh Sandhu; Rahul Bheke, Fran Gonzalez, Juanan Gonzalez, Ashique Kuruniyan; Erik Paartalu, Suresh Singh Wangjam; Udanta Singh, Cleiton Silva, Sunil Chhetri; Kristian Opseth

FC Barcelona : What’s Wrong and How to Fix Them?

FC Barcelona are in crisis right now both on and off the field. On field the performances have been deplorable while the happiness of Leo Messi and also the Presidential elections have really added up to their problems.

FC Barcelona players during training drills

Ronald Koeman’s 4-2-3-1 looked to have worked at first but as the season is going on it seems Barcelona need something more dynamic.
The first thing that Barca need is a new formation.

1. 3-4-1-2
This is the best formation for Barca offensively. While defensively it may cause some problems, but if FC Barcelona can get going it can be a very long day for their opposition no matter who they are. Goalkeeper would definitely be Marc Andre Ter-Stegen. Gerard Pique and Clement Lenglet are the two obvious choices for centre back.

But after Pique’s injury against Atletico, Koeman has limited options. Samuel Umtiti is almost fit and it maybe his best chance at redemption. For the other centre back academy prospect Ronald Araujo is the best option. But due to him being injured for the next 1.5 weeks we may see Frenkie De Jong filling up at centre back. Another option will be Sergino Dest who was definitely Barca’s signing of the summer.

He is a very versatile player and his tackling skills and great anticipation will definitely help him in playing as a centre back. In the left of midfield Jordi Alba will be the best fit. He was a left winger early in his career but we can still see that attacking spark in him whenever he plays as a wing back. The two central midfielders would be Miralem Pjanic and Frenkie De Jong.But if Koeman decides to play Frenkie as a centre back then Phillipe Coutinho would be the best bet in that role.

He would play as the more offensive of the 2 central mids and let Pjanic operate in his favoured deeper role. On the right side of midfield Ousmane Dembele is definitely the man. He has had a great season so far and he has been electric on the right flank. Being a both footed player he has the advantage of both cutting inside or going outside when trying to ward off a defender. Also his outrageous speed is something that all defenders will be afraid of.

Having two pacy players on either side of midfield will reduce Barca’s chance of being caught on the counter. The number 10 role will be taken obviously by La Pulga. Messi has been a bit quite this season. But this free role behind the two strikers might just be what Messi requires right now. He will be playing as a Trequarista and finding pockets of spaces which he always does and it will also allow him link up with anyone he wants. The strike duo will be of Antoine Griezmann and Martin Braithwaite.

Playing Braithwaite as a first choice striker may seem odd but his technical skills and speed will definitely come in handy for the Blaugrana. Also playing as an out and out centre forward will increase Antoine Griezmann’s chances of scoring which will definitely boost his confidence.

Once Ronald Araujo returns from injury we may see Frenkie De Jong move into the heart of midfield and Coutinho play as the number 10 with a strike duo of Messi and Griezmann. This formation would terrorise opposition defences but knowing Barca and Ronald Koeman we’ll never get the chance of seeing Barca in this shape.

2. 5-2-1-2
If Ronald Koeman wants to transform Barcelona to a team with more defensive solidity then this might be the best formation. Between the sticks would be Ter-Stegen. The 3 centre backs would be Umtiti, Lenglet and Dest while the 2 full backs would be Alba and Sergi Roberto. Playing Roberto as a centre back and Dest as a right back is also a valid option.

The two defensive midfielders would be Frenkie De Jong and Miralem Pjanic and Phil Coutinho would take up the number 10 rule. Upfront will be the strike duo Leo Messi and Antoine Griezmann. This formation limits Barca’s width but gives them more compactness and limits the spaces for the opposition’s attackers. Judging by Barca’s defeat to Atletico we may soon se the Blaugrana becoming a counter attacking side and this formation would suit them well.


The second thing Barca need are new recruits. The January window is almost here and with Ansu Fati and Gerard Pique out with long term injuries Barca definitely need more players. With Barca almost nearing Bankruptcy we may also see a few players leaving.



OUTS:


1.Junior Firpo: He was never meant to be at Barca. Like Messi said – the board always signed players to cover up holes and this one was exactly that. After making a blunder by selling Lucas Digne ,Barca signed the young left back just because he scored against Barca when he was at Betis. At Barca he always struggled to make an impact. He never really impressed and it would be best for both parties if he left.

2. Martin Braithwaite: Signed last season as an emergency due to lack of forwards Braithwaite just like Firpo has failed to make any sort of impact at Barca. He was great in his first two games but then he has become a bench warmer getting 5-6 minutes every 2 games. Again just like Firpo, him leaving would benefit both the parties.

Hero ISL 2020-21: Northeast United FC shock Mumbai City FC in their 99th league appearance

The matchday 2 of the Hero Indian Super League saw Northeast United FC end their 14 match winless run with a 1-0 win over the City football group owned Mumbai City FC.

It comes in as the first ‘upset’ for the islanders despite cashing in big during the transfer window. This game had almost every mouth watering element a football fan can ever ask for. A penalty, a red card and the underdogs stealing the show.

Gerard Nus aligned his team in a classic 4-3-3 formation. Subhasish Roy Chowdhury wore the captain’s armband.
Subhasish (GK), Ashutosh, Fox, Lambot, Gurjinder, Camara, Lalengmawia, Lalrempuia, Machado, Kwesi, Ninthoi made it to starting XI.

Sergio Lobera used his favourite 4-2-3-1 formation with Hernan Santana dropping down to defense in the absense of Mourtada Fall. Amrinder (GK), Mandar, Santana, Sarthak, Rakip, Jahouh, Borges, Raynier, Hugo, Le fondre, Ogbeche started for Mumbai City FC.

The first 45 minutes saw Sergio Lobera’s man holding the lion’s share of possession as expected. Le fondre found Ogbeche through a cross from the right flank but Ashutosh Mehta had it covered. Ahmed Jahouh tried to find the back of the next twice from long range efforts but missed the target altogether. Lobera’s team were dominating the possession but missed the final touch on every occasion.

However, things got ‘too bad’ for Mumbai when their key playmaker Ahmed Jahouh was given his marching orders. The Moroccan saw the red card for a nasty challenge on Khassa Camara just before the half time whistle.

Gerard Nus and company looked determined and were clear with their approach from the first whistle of the second half itself. They tried and tried to capitalise on the numerical advantage that Mumbai City FC gifted them. Dylan Fox’s header found Rowllin Borges’s hand and that was enough to convince the referee to give away a spot kick to the Highlanders. Kwesi Appiah made no mistake in getting the job done from the spot.

Mumbai City FC were on the back foot and were trying hard to find the equaliser. Sarthak Guloi came close to scoring from a header in the 66th minute but the connection wasn’t good enough to find the back of the net. A few minutes later, Farukh Choudhary almost found a goal but Dylan Fox had different plans. The Aussie centre back not only denied Farukh a goal but also sealed the deal for his team.

6 minutes were added after regulation time and Northeast United gained possesion and they did try well to find a second goal courtesy of a lightning fast counter attack in which substitute Imran Khan fired a left footer but it had nothing to worry about for Amrinder and Mumbai City FC.

NorthEast United FC beat Mumbai City FC

Northeast United FC start their campaign on a high with a much needed victory over Mumbai City FC in what was their 99th Hero ISL appearance.

Hero of the match : Khassa Camara


The Mauritanian International was exceptional in the middle of the park. He made 10 tackles, 3 interceptions and 4 clearances with a passing accuracy of 75%. He organised team in a well mannered way and that helped them look dangerous.

ATK Mohun Bagan sweep past Kerala Blasters 1-0

ATKMB began their campaign with an unconvincing win over the Kerala Blasters at the GMC stadium in Goa. The Tuskers were overall the better team but some abysmal finishing led to their demise.

Kerala Blasters players during warm up


Kerala Blasters had lined up in a classic 4-3-3 style with the full backs joining in the attacks. Habas chose his preferred 3-5-2 formation with Edu Garcia as Roy Krishna’s strike partner. ATKMB were setup as a counter attacking team and often looked to play long balls for Krishna to latch on to.


The 1st chance came in the 17th minute when Roy Krishna’s shot was blocked by Nhamoinesu. He also had a couple of other opportunities but missed both of them. Kerala’s 1st chance came in the 36th minute when Ritwik Das scuffed his shot from point blank range.

In the 79th minute Edu Garcia’s fierce volley just curled away from Albino’s far post and from the resulting goal kick Samad found himself with the ball in the box and again he sliced his volley above the crossbar. Kerala continued to attack for the last 10 minutes but found no way past the stubborn ATKMB defence.

In the 50th minute a dangerous cross found it’s way to Sahal Samad who sliced his shot from the right side of the penalty box. Kerala had really taken the game to ATKMB and somehow 2 dangerous crosses were cleared by the mariners’ defence.

The breakthrough finally came in the 66th minute when due to some lack of co-ordination in the Kerala defence Roy Krishna chested down the ball and drilled in a left footed volley past Albino Gomes.

It was ATKMBs first win as a merged entity and they look set to win many more. Coach Kibu Vicuna will now need to focus on improving his team’s finishing as the rest of the play was quite good. Upnext for Kerala is a match against the Highlanders on thursday the 26th.

ISL 2020-21 : Northeast United FC take on Mumbai City FC as the weekend unfolds the story

Here it is! Matchday 2 will see the Highlanders take on the Islanders in what promises to be a mouth watering contest. It’s not just gonna be Northeast United vs Mumbai City.

It’s also gonna be Federico Gallego vs Bartholomew Ogbeche, the latter was phenomenal during his time at the Highlands courtesy of the Uruguayan magician Federico Gallego.

Blast from the past :
The last time around when these teams met, it was Jorge Costa’s side who emerged as the winners at the Mumbai Football arena. The islanders took home all three points with a 1-0 victory over the Highlanders.

Northeast United FC :
The season 2019-20 was surely a one to forget for Northeast United FC as they injuries spoiled their party even after a great start to their campaign. It surely seems the Highlanders have tried to cover all the spaces with the brand new additions they have brought it.

Northeast United Fc are on a 14 match winless run and will be looking to change that in their 99th Hero ISL appearance under New head coach Gerard Nus.
“First of all we want to be competitive. No matter what the result is but we need to fight until the end and should be our identity. We want to dictate the game. In my opinion we need to be a team that fights and fights and fights without giving up and should be proud of our performance.” said Gerard Nus

northeast United coaches during a discussion

Mumbai City FC :
The Islanders closely missed out on a top 4 finish last season and have covered all the areas in a ‘too good’ manner. Sergio Lobera has made a great side all together. Hugo Boumous made a big money move to Mumbai City FC and too add more pressure to the opposition defenders, the club has brought in Adam Le fondre and Bartholomew Ogbeche.

The City football group owned outfit looks ready to hit the ground running.
“NEUFC have some problems, but all teams have problems. I’ve managed to train with my full squad only on a few days, but we don’t want to complain. We need to prepare and compete well in the first game.” Sergio Lobera added.

Battles to watch out for :

Federico Gallego vs Bartholomew Ogbeche :
Northeast United had a dream season in 2018-19. Bartholomew Ogbeche and Federico Gallego formed one of the most deadliest duos that season. The following season Bart moved to Kerala Blasters but Gallego continued with Northeast. Now, Bartholomew Ogbeche has joined Mumbai City FC and it will be interesting to see how they play against each other tonight.

Adam Le fondre vs Benjamin Lambot :
The English target man had a great season in Australia’s top division last season, he comes in with loads and loads of experience under his belt and the Islanders will hope that their man delivers. On the other hand, Northeast United FC’s Belgian stalwart Benjamin Lambot is a player who has played top division european football for most of his career. His experience and ability to control the game will surely play an evident role for the Highlanders.

Probable Starting XI :

Northeast United FC : Subhashish, Ashutosh, Fox, Lambot, Lalengmawia, Camara, Gallego, Ninthoi, VP Suhair, Appiah.

Mumbai City FC : Amrinder, Rakip, Mandar, Fall, Sarthak, Jahouh, Hugo, Borges, Farukh, Ogbeche, Le fondre.

Hero ISL 2020-21: Amrinder Singh exhibits a spark of sportmanship during Mumbai City FC’s pre-match press conference

The much awaited Hero Indian Super League had kicked-off yesterday with ISL debutant, ATK Mohun Bagan sealing a 1-0 victory against Kerala Blasters FC. Fijian star, Roy Krishna scored the only goal for the Green and Maroons. Today, the Islanders, Mumbai City FC will be facing a strong Northeast United FC.

Yesterday afternoon, at 12:30 pm, MCFC Head Coach, Sergio Lobera and Goalkeeper, Amrinder Singh had addressed the media in a virtual pre-match press conference that was hosted on the Zoom platform.

The Head Coach and their Indian Goalkeeper were in a really good mood and seemed to have a positive, calm and composed mindset. The conference had journalists from all across the country with some big names in the world of media like TOI, HT, Sportskeeda, Goal and Olympic channel joined the same.

In the first part of the conference, when I, on the behalf of SportsKindle, asked Amrinder, “We all are aware of the fact that goalkeeper is the most trivial position on a football pitch. So, for instance, if you find your opposition launching a counter attack, how are you going to prepare yourself mentally in those few seconds in order to prevent your opposition from finding the ball at the back of the net?”

The 27-year old Indian goalie answered, “The mindset needs to be developed and that depends on the way a coach make his players understand their roles. It’s not that like only the goalkeeper needs to prepare a mindset and that too only during a counter attack. When you’re a footballer, no matter a goalkeeper, a defender, a midfielder or an attacker, you should be prepared for any kind of situation that might occur during the whole 90-minutes of a football match. We have a lot of experienced people in this team. People who have been in the Hero ISL for a few years and some who have played at a very high level.”

Mumbai City FC goalkeper Amrinder Singh with his teammates

I guess, this answer of Amrinder Singh must have made each one of us present there understand that how much of sportsmanship and game spirit this lion-heart goalkeeper of India possesses and probably, this is the reason of his success. Mumbai City FC vs Northeast United FC kicks-off at 7:30pm today. The match will be played behind closed doors at Tilak Maidan Stadium in Goa.

Hero ISL 2020-21 : Northeast United FC annouce Parimatch News as their main sponsor for the seventh edition

Northeast United FC welcome Parimatch News on board as their Main Sponsor for Season 7 of the Hero Indian Super League, the club announced on friday.

Parimatch news the sponsor of NorthEast United FC

Parimatch News is a sports, esports and entertainment outlet for everyone who loves and lives sports. Parimatch News seeks to deliver high-quality sports coverage and cutting-edge analysis for all sports enthusiasts.

Northeast United FC players during their preseason training

Speaking on the association, Japneet Singh Sethi, Marketing Lead – India, Parimatch News said, “I’m chuffed to bits, to say the least. The Northeast is a region that is obsessed with football to the extent that people over there worship the sport, just like we at Parimatch News do. This association between NorthEast United Football Club and Parimatch News is therefore quite fitting.”

Northeast United FC coaching staff

“We are delighted to have Parimatch News with us as our main sponsor. They are a vibrant brand whose mission and vision are aligned with ours, and we are confident that that this will be a successful partnership.”, said Priya Runchal, Executive
Director, NEUFC.

Northeast United FC players

Northeast United Football Club, the Guwahati based franchise representing the 8 northeastern states will begin their 7th Hero ISL campaign against Mumbai City FC on Saturday, the 21st of November 2020. With Head Coach Gerard Nus at the helm, the Highlanders have the youngest side in the league and will look to start their season on the right note against one of the top contenders in the league.

Bengaluru FC Team Analysis : can they win another title?

Resembling a powerful squad ahead of the 2020-21 season, the Blues appear to be quite smart selectors. Can Bengaluru FC bag another Hero ISL title this time?

Bengaluru FC, ever since their inception 7 years ago, have impressed pundits and football fans alike in the bygone seasons of Hero ISL with their breathtaking performances. Finding itself among a handful of Indian clubs who have experienced enviable success, the Blues are one of the most decorated teams in the country, having won almost every major trophy. It is with these exclusive standards and optimism that the players, coaching staff and fans approach every campaign.

Despite their success and notwithstanding their prosperity, the 2019-20 term witnessed Bengaluru FC having a frustrating season. An ISL semi-final elimination, that too, after leading by two goals, must have been devastating for all the fans and stakeholders alike. With the AFC Cup also in their fixtures, Carles Cuadrat will hopefully be aiming for nothing short of the title this time around.

Last Season’s Performance:  Third

There were promising signs from Bengaluru FC at the beginning of the 2019-20 season. The Blues began with three stalemates, however proceeded to win three matches in their next four encounters, thereby stretching out their unbeaten streak to seven matches. However, a line of horrible showings towards the finish of the group stage saw them drop down to third in the points table, missing out on the top spot by nine points.

They commenced the playoffs facing ATK well with a two-goal lead on aggregate, only for the inevitable heroes to create a surprising rebound triumph when they locked horns once again in Kolkata.

Pre-Season


Bengaluru FC, in their pre season friendly, played an intriguing 1-1 draw against Hyderabad FC. Wungngyam Muirang, on one hand, marked the scoresheet for the Blues. Aridane Santana’s spot-kick for Hyderabad was the other goal in the game.

Coaching Staff

Carles Cuadrat proceeds in charge for the third year, assisted by Javier Pinillos and Naushad Moosa. The Blues are also directed under goalkeeping coach Julen Esnaola and their fitness coach Mikel Guillen.

Cuadrat is known for his tactical understanding. The trait of playing to the strengths of one’s team and attacking the weakness of the opposition as a football coach is pretty well embedded in him. Blues are one of the most embellished groups in the nation that can be scrappy when necessary or beautiful if needed.

Transfer Dealings

It proved to be quite a summer of some stir for the Blues, as they brought in ‘key inclusions to key areas of the pitch’, both in the backline as well as the attackers. Versatile players who were already a part of the Bengaluru FC family had their services retained through fresh contracts.

Ins

After a problematic past season, the Blues rushed to make changes to their squad. A total of 10 signings were made. Foreigners like Cleiton Silva and Kristian Opsethmore strengthened the squad. The arrival of Pratik Chaduhari from Mumbai City FC and Ajith Kumar from Chennai City FC would bolster a defence that needs fine-tuning. The most lucrative of all became the arrival of former Mohun Bagan ace Fran Gonzalez. The Spaniard was the top scorer for I-League-winning Mariners side lately.

Outs

A few outsiders like Raphael Augusto, Albert Serran, Nili Perdomo and Kevaughn Frater have left India to take their talents elsewhere. Manuel Onwu has moved to Odisha FC, where he has managed to garner success on loan. While Prabhsukhan Gill was signed by Kerala Blasters, Rino Anto and Eugeneson Lyngdoh moved to East Bengal. The biggest departure from Bengaluru FC was Nishu Kumar’s transition to Kerala Blasters. The full-back playing youngblood, who was a significant pinion in Cuadrat’s framework, will be difficult to supplant.

Squad

Goalkeepers: Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Lalthuammawia Ralte, Lara Sharma, Dipesh Chauhan

Defenders: Rahul Bheke, Pratik Chaudhari, Harmanjot Khabra, Fran Gonzalez, Juanan Gonzalez, Ajith Kumar, Wungngayam Muirang, Joe Zoherliana, Parag Shrivas, Biswa Darjee

Midfielders: Dimas Delgado, Erik Paartalu, Ajay Chhetri, Namgyal Bhutia, Suresh Wangjam, Naorem Roshan Singh, Amay Morajkar, Thoi Singh, Emanuel Lalchhanchuaha

Attackers: Sunil Chhetri, Cleiton Silva, Kristian Opseth, Deshorn Brown, Ashique Kuruniyan, Udanta Singh, Edmund Lalrindika, Leon Augustine, Thongkhosiem Haokip

Formation

4-2-3-1

This seems likely to be the ideal formation playing under Cuadrat to witness during all Bengaluru FC matchdays. The prolific duo Fran and Juanan start as center-backs in front of Gurpreet Singh Sandhu. While Rahul Bheke takes up the right side, Ajith Kumar would be expected to fill in for Nishu in the left-back role.

Dimas and Erik would be the double pivot in the middle of the park, while Chhetri plays in the opening behind the striker flanked by Ashique and Udanta on either side. Cleiton Silva will take up the No. 9 role.

4-4-2 (Alternate)

Both Ashique and Udanta start wider,likely to assist further forward. This strategy would prove to be useful against teams that like to keep the ball and rotate possession, giving a good base for counter-attacks.

The greatest change in the development is Kristain Opseth’s incorporation. The Norwegian will play alongside Chhetri in a two-man frontline with each of them switching involvement during the build-up play.

Bengaluru FC will face FC Goa on 22nd November

Strengths

Team endurance and adaptability is their key strength and speciality. Bengaluru FC under Cuadrat have shown immense tactical flexibility, adopting varying strategies against varying teams, analysing their negative points and learning from them. Another key part of their gameplay is their proficiency from set-piece scenarios.

Erik Paartalu and Juanan are marking nightmares from corner and free-kick situations and the addition of Fran Gonzalez has only increased the threat. With the likes of Dimas, who is able to deliver pinpoint balls into the box, opposing defenders will have to be at their very best to counter this line of attack.

Weaknesses

The one big weakness on their part has been their failure to replace Miku. The Former Bengaluru FC striker had been highly influential and his replacements have failed to deliver equivalently.

The signings of Cleiton Silva and Kristian Opseth are meant to absolve the problem, but their lack of familiarity with Indian football might pose other issues. The lack of depth in midfield is also another big issue for the Blues. Any injury to key players could become problematic for Cuadrat.

Players to Watch

Fran Gonzalez

The player who is mostly likely going to benefit from Bengaluru FC’s set-piece proficiency is former Mariner Fran Gonzalez. The defender was the top scorer for the 2019-20 I-league winning side (10 goals). His lethal  instinct and attack positioning during set-piece situations will pose a threat to opposition defenders.

Cleiton Silva

If there was one position last season where Bengaluru FC failed to impress, it was that of the striker. The Blues tried to replace Miku three times and came away with disappointing results on each occasion, leading to their eventual semi-final exit. Onwu, Deshorn Brown and Frater failed to live up to expectations. That is the exact reason why Silva’s performances would be scrutinized by both fans and pundits. The Brazilian will need to produce steady results, if Bengaluru are to lift the coveted title.

Rahul Bheke

With some new faces in defence after the departure of Nishu and Serran, Bheke would need to be the X-Factor for Carles Cuadrat. His versatility will be key, especially during the early stages of the campaign, as Cuadrat strives to find the ideal starting lineup. He has been a dependable presence at the back for the Blues and will need to continue his performances, if Bengaluru FC are to weather the storm in the early weeks of the Indian Super League.

Bengaluru have always set high standards and they would be looking for nothing short of their second ISL title this season. They have made shrewd signings and would hope that the lack of their strong home support will not be a factor in their performances.

Hero ISL 2020-21: ATK Mohun Bagan vs Kerala Blasters FC match preview

The wait is finally over. The Hero Indian Super League 2020-21 is all set to kick-off today and it’s ATK Mohun Bagan vs Kerala Blasters FC.

The newly merged entity of the ISL champions ATK FC and I League champions Mohun Bagan is ready to start a whole new journey while on the other side, KBFC will be searching for their first ever title in 7 years.

The two times Hero ISL runner-up KBFC, under the guidance of Mohun Bagan’s I League winning coach, Kibu Vicuna has played more ISL openers than any other ISL team. The Blasters also have exciting fullbacks in former Hero ISL winner Nishu Kumar and Jessel Carneiro, who provided five assists last season.

The Blasters possess a lot of talent in midfield as well. Sergio Cidoncha, who will be competing in his third Hero ISL campaign, will be bolstering the midfield. Also, Argentine attacker Facundo Pereyra is a player who can create chances from the centre and it will be quite interesting to see how Vicuna decides to use him.

Vicente Gomez is the other linchpin for the Kochi-based club. Jeakson Singh, Prasanth Karuthadathkuni, Sahal Abdul Samad and Seityasen Singh can also be their Indian options in midfield besides Nongdamba Naorem who can expect some game time under Vicuna.

ATKMB vs Kerala Blasters


ATK Mohun Bagan, on the other hand, will be hoping for a win on their Hero ISL debut under head coach Antonio Lopez Habas and they are a team which can make that happen. From defence to attack, the newly-merged entity possess both quality and depth.

Their centre-back pairing of Tiri and Sandesh Jhingan, who will be playing for the first time ever against his former club Kerala Blasters FC, is as strong as any in the league. Also, the fullbacks of the Kolkata-based club, Pritam Kotal, Subhasish Bose and Prabir Das have got great potential to showcase.

They also have experience in the middle with Javier Hernandez, Carl McHugh, Bradden Inman, Pronay Halder, Jayesh Rane and Michael Soosairaj being the prime midefielders in ATK Mohun Bagan’s lineup. Even the Mohun Bagan boy, SK Sahil may have some game time under Antonio Lopez Habas.

The Mariners will be relying on the tried and tested duo of Roy Krishna and David Williams to score the goals this campaign. They combined to score 22 times last season and will hoping to have a similar impact with ATK Mohun Bagan. In short, the the Hero ISL 2020-21 opener is going to be absolutely worth watching.

Esports India announce Online National Freestyle Football Championship

On 19th November Esports India announced it’s 1st ever Online National Freestyle Football Championship in collaboration with Football Freestyle India.

Due to this COVID-19 situation sports has taken a major setback. In light to this Esports India has decided to give this opportunity to the footballers to show off their skills. The competition will be held at a National Level allowing participants from every corner of the country to participate in this historic competition.

“Esports India is presenting a golden opportunity to Football Freestyle to show their ultimate talent at the National level. ESPORTS INDIA is first member of Global Esports Federation who has taken such an initiative to introduce sports on an online platform and we are looking forward for athletes to showcase their talent to the world.” said Amit Gaikwad, President.

Famous Indian Professional Freestyler Archis Patel along with other prominent freestylers has joined the judges panel. Other known faces like Alankar Tambe and Monish Nikam will be assisting and encouraging the participants.

Esports India



“Esports have been the backbone for making the biggest online football freestyle competition possible therby giving many athletes a chance to showcase their skills at ease from home. The Global Esports Federation has taken a crucial step in laying the foundation stone for a lot of budding athletes with this online platform.This is a golden opportunity to show us what you got and Represent your passion.” Said Archis Patil on his association for the tournament.



The competition will be streamed live on Youtube and Facebook and registration has begun from the 8th of November and all ready 200 participants have joined. You can register till the 26th of November by clicking on this Link.
Winners of the competition will be given cash prizes and medals while all participating will be given participation certificates.

The competition is an extension of the mission started by the Global Esports Federation of trying to develop a community for Esports in India encouraging more and more athletes to take part in it.

Antonio López Habas, ATK Mohun Bagan FC and The million dollar question: Can they lift the trophy for a record 4th time this season?

Confidence and expectations are high in the ATK Mohun Bagan camp, with the fans hoping that the club lifts the trophy for a record fourth time when the edition of the seventh season comes to an end. Can Antonio López Habas make this dream come true? 

Atk MOhun Bagan champions of 2019-2020

On the cold Saturday night of March 14, Uzbek official Kasimov Sharzod blew the final whistle in the unpacked Fatorda ground decisively concluding the electrifying encounter that witnessed ATK unfolding as ISL champions for the third time in six seasons. After crushing their southernmost counterpart (Chennayin FC) ATK appears to be quite optimistic for the impending Hero Indian Super League 2020-21, and much has to be attributed to their returning head coach, Antonio López Habas.

The Spaniard Antonio López Habas led the Kolkata-based club to the coveted trophy in the inaugural season too, beating FC Goa in the semi-finals and Kerala Blasters FC in the endmost finale. The two-time winning head coach, Antonio López Habas expects an appreciable future for the club after the fusion between ATK and Mohun Bagan was approved in July this year. The Pozoblanco born former centre back believes that retaining Mohun Bagan’s iconic maroon and green colours adds 131 years of history to the club.

Antonio Lopez Habas during a press meet

Antonio López Habas possesses, what we can say, a highly prolific football career in a defensive role. He was born in Pozoblanco, Spain on 28th of May 1957. Antonio had an unassuming career as a professional footballer, making 48 La Liga match appearances in the course of four seasons. However, he officially made an untimely and prompt retirement as a professional player in the early age of 29. 

Antonio López Habas started coaching in the early 1990s, with Atlético Madrid’s reserves. In 1995, he was appointed for the managerial role in Valencia. After one season apiece in amateur football he took charge of the Bolivian national team, first as an assistant to Xabier Azkargorta, and then eventually as their head coach in two Copa América tournaments. Bolivia featured as the runners up in 1997. In August 2014, Habas was named the head coach of ATK in the Indian Super League.

After a dip in form from midway through the season, he led his team to the semi-finals by drawing with Goa, meeting the same opponent once again and defeating them on penalties. In the decisive match, against Kerala Blasters FC, he even benched his marquee player Luis García and the compatriot Jofre, for which he was praised by critics and the side won thanks to a goal by Mohammed Rafique in extra time.

On 25 April 2016, the former Valencia manager was appointed for service at FC Pune City. On 16 September 2017, after a run-in with the board of directors, he left his position. And then finally on May 2019, López returned to ATK. In a final played behind closed doors, he won the national championship against Chennaiyin FC to become the first manager to achieve the feat twice with the same team.

However, after winning a second trophy in 2016 under head coach Jose Molina, the current Sporting Director of the Spanish National team, ATK fell to a slump in the consecutive seasons, failing to live up to the lofty standards they had set in the preceding seasons. But the return of Habas seems to have rejuvenated the side in all fronts.

Not only in the attacking front, but the 63-year-old coach has ensured there remains enough balance on both sides of the pitch. The aim to build a solid backline was evident with the arrival of full-back players like Pritam Kotal, Tiri, Subhasish Bose, Anas Edathodika and Sumit Rathi, whose strong performance saw him being adjudged as the ISL Emerging Player of the League last season.

Steps are being taken to ensure access to the best infrastructure and training sessions to compete in the international arena. Investments will be made to ensure refurbishment of the existing Mohun Bagan facility so that ISL and AFC home games can be staged effectively. Co-owner Sourav Ganguly said, “I salute the coming together of ATK and Mohun Bagan. Together the brand name ATK Mohun Bagan will create history.”

Confidence and expectations are high in the ATK Mohun Bagan camp, with the fans hoping that the club lifts the trophy for a record fourth time when the edition of the seventh season comes to an end. Can Antonio López Habas make this dream come true? 

Hero Indian Super League 2020-21 to be telecasted across 82 territories

The Indian Super League is surely the best thing that has ever happened to football in India. The seventh Edition is just one night away from kickoff and live action to be telecasted and live streamed in 82 territories across the world.

Indian Super League trophy

The Love for the festival of football in India is now not just limited to the subcontinent and that is why the Hero ISL will be brought to 82 international territories through five partners across TV and digital platforms.

Hyderabad FC players during their preseason training

The league has partnered with global sports broadcasters to bring the action live to millions of Indian football fans across geographies. In addition to international markets including USA and Australia, fans across Continental Europe, Central Asia, Far East, South East Asia, and Asia Pacific can also tune in to enjoy India’s premier football league live.

FC Goa players during their preseason training

The Hero ISL marks the resumption of live sports action in India with the entire season being played in Goa behind closed doors. The 2020-21 season features 115 games amongst 11 teams, with the inclusion of Kolkata giants ATK Mohun Bagan and SC East Bengal.

SC East Bengal players during their preseason training

Official broadcasting partner Star Network will exclusively telecast ISL matches in India on Star Sports 1 SD & HD, Star Sports 2 SD & HD (English); Star Sports Hindi 1 SD & HD, Star Sports 3, Star Gold 2 (Hindi), Asianet Plus, Asianet Movies (Malayalam); Star Sports Bangla; Star Sports Kannada; Star Sports Tamil; Star Sports Telugu and Star Sports Marathi. Online streaming will be available on Disney+ Hotstar VIP and JioTV.

List of international broadcasters and live streaming partners:

ESPN + : USA & Canada

Fox Sports : Australia

1Play Sports (YouTube channel and Facebook page): Singapore, Indonesia (Genflix), Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Philippines, Brunei, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Hong Kong, Macau

Yupp TV: Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Faroe Islands, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Vatican City, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan

Digicel PNG (TVWan Action) : Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomons, Samoa, Cook Islands, Vanuatu, American Samoa, Kiribati, Tuvalu, Niue, Tokelau, Tahiti, New Caledonia, Tonga, Nauru

Asianet Plus: Middle East

Jalsha Movies SD: Middle East and Bangladesh

Jalsha Movies HD: Maldives and Bangladesh

ATK MohunBagan players during their preseason training

New Entrants ATK MohunBagan will start the proceedings against Kerala Blasters on November 20.

ISL 2020-21 : Northeast United FC to continue their preparations in full swing amid two Covid 19 positive cases in the squad

Things got bad for Northeast United FC as they were forced to pause their preparations for the seventh edition of the Indian Super League due to two positive cases being recorded in their camp as reported by TOI.

Northeast United FC players during their preseason training

But thankfully, the club has tackled the situation very well and have ensured complete safety of their players. The Highlanders took to their Social Media handles and gave us a better picture of the present scenario. This comes in as a great great news for the fans as the team will resume it’s regular training.

Northeast United FC players during their preseason training at Goa

“We would like to confirm that the team will resume its regular training after two asymptomatic players tested positive for COVID-19,” NorthEast United FC said in a statement.

“The two players were immediately moved to a different hotel where they are undergoing quarantine as per league guidelines and protocols”, the statement added.

NorthEast United FC said that the players are continuing their fitness sessions via zoom calls.

“The subsequent tests of the other players and staff were all negative, and the team’s scheduled training sessions will be underway from today as we gear up for our first match on the 21st of November 2020. The players are in good health and have been participating in the team’s fitness sessions via zoom calls,” the statement said.

Contradicting a report by a national daily, which claimed that Northeast United FC were using the ‘hotel services’ who were not part of their bio-bubble.

“The club has been following all league-mandated guidelines and protocols to ensure the utmost safety of the players and staff, it added. Like all clubs, the NorthEast United FC has transport that is for the exclusive use of the team and is in line with all the regulations,” the club said.

“The drivers assigned to these buses are also a part of the bio-bubble,” NEUFC added.

“The safety of all our players and staff members is of the highest priority and we will continue to ensure that all protocols are being followed,” the statement said.

Northeast United FC players and coach have a discussion

The Highlanders Kickoff their season against Mumbai City FC on November 21.

Odisha FC Squad analysis : Do they have what it takes to be a champion?

Odisha FC are back! The squad is way different to last year and so is their manager. Stuart Baxter has taken over from Josep Gombau who had to leave due to personal reasons.



LAST SEASON’S PERFORMANCE:


Odisha finished 6th in the league with 25 points mainly due to a shaky start. The juggernauts played some brilliant football but it was too late to secure a playoffs berth.


TRANSFERS:



INS: Their biggest signing was undoubtedly Marcelinho. They roped in a staggering total of 18 players and also promoted several players from the academy. They also got in stars like Diego Mauricio and Steven Taylor who are influential players.

OUTS:
All of Odisha’s overseas players left with only Diawandou Diagne remaining from previous year. They also let go appearance their Indian talents like Romeo Fernandes and Albino Gomes.



STRENGTHS:


Odisha’s biggest strength is their attack. They have arguably the best attack in the league with a certain Marcelinho who has shown his class in the ISL. With Marcelinho behind Diego Mauricio and Manuel Onwu Odisha are bound to create venomous attacks.They also have a solid back line and look all set to win!



WEAKNESSES:


Odisha’s main problem is adhesion. The new players haven’t played together before and also have no experience of the ISL. Coach Baxter will need to make sure that there is no lack of coordination among the players like last season.



TACTICS & FORMATIONS:


Odisha’s brilliant squad depth allows them to play almost any formation. But the one which will allow them to play at their best is the 3-4-1-2. It has numerous advantages. Marcelinho has a free role and both of the lethal strikers can slot in. The two wingbacks also enjoy a lot of freedom as they can join in the attacks , make overlapping runs which will give the team more width.

The holding midfield of Alexander and Rai is very solid and even if the opponents manage to dribble them The Juggernauts have a strong backline to thwart the opposition. Taylor and Tratt are the obvious centre backs with Gaurav Bora playing as the 3rd one. The 2 wings back can be D’Souza and Sarangi and Jerry can slot into the right side as a super sub if needed.



PLAYERS TO WATCH:


1. MARCELINHO: This man doesn’t need an introduction. He is arguably the best forward in the ISL and we have seen what he can do.
If given a free role behind the strikers Marcelinho can be too hot to handle for the opposition. Let’s hope he can keep delivering.



2. STEVEN TAYLOR: Taylor is a man of Premier League experience. He made 195 appearances over 12 seasons for Newcastle United. He is a tall, imposing defender and definitely adds some muscle to The Juggernauts’ backline. He has also been given the captain’s armband for this season.

Odisha FC star player Steven Taylor



SQUAD


Goalkeepers: Arshdeep Singh, Kamaljit Singh, Ravi Kumar, Ankit Bhuyan

Defenders
: Steven Taylor, Saurabh Meher, Gaurav Bora, Kamalpreet Singh, Md. Sajid Dhot, George D’Souza, Shubham Sarangi, Jacob Tratt, Hendry Antonay

Midfielders: Baoringdao Bodo, Cole Alexander, Isak Vanlalruatfela, Jerry Mawihmingthanga, S Lalrezuala, Nandhakumar Sekar, Paul Ramfangzauva, Samuel Lalmuanpuia, Vinit Rai, Thoiba Singh, Diawandou Diagne, Nischay Adhikari, Rishabh Dobriyal, Akshunna Tyagi, Marcelinho, Premjit Singh

Forwards: Diego Maurício, Manuel Onwu, Daniel Lalhlimpuia, Samuel Lalmuanpuia

Hyderabad FC Squad analysis : Can they win the title this season?

Hyderabad FC are back for revenge! It’s just their second season in the ISL after they replaced FC Pune City last season. Let’s have a look on what The Nizams have to offer.



Last Season’s Performance:


It was a very disappointing 1st season for The Nizams as they finished last in the table with only 2 wins. With the appointment of new coach Manuel Roca The Nizams look ready for a fresh start as they play Odisha in their opener.



Transfers:


INS:
The Nizams have captured a dangerous quadruple of Spanish players- Odei Onaindia , Lluis Sastre, Aridan Santana and Fran Sandaza. Along with Spanish manager Roca the players will look to link up to create venomous attacks.

OUTS:
The greatest loss for Hyderabad was Marcelinho. The Brazilian was there standout performer last year involved in all of the team’s 21 goals. Bobo and Giles Brown followed Marcelinho out of the exit door with Giles returning to Brazil.



STRENGTHS:


Hyderabad’s main strength lies in their Spanish Core. Along with a Spanish manager The Nizams will look to play expansive football as expected from them.



WEAKNESSES:

Of course the loss of Marcelinho is the biggest blow for Hyderabad but their defence is a major concern as well. They had the poorest defensive record in the league conceding 39 goals in 18 games. Although they have recieved a buff in defence at the signing of Onaindia but Roca’s main job is to bring defensive stability.

Hyderabad FC players during their training


TACTICS AND FORMATION:


It maybe best for Hyderabad to go with a conservative 4-2-3-1. This will give more stability to their defensive shape with a layer of holding midfielders covering the defensive line. They may well play with long balls as Lluis Sastre is a master passer. They also have pacy players like Holicharan Narzary and Joel Chianese who can accomodate themselves in the wings.

They also have Aridane Santana who can easily play as a target man due to his physicality. So the biggest possibility is that Hyderabad play a counter attacking setup. But they can also start with a 3 man defence and a formation of 3-4-1-2 but that is less probable as their defensive depth is not good. It will be really interesting to see what Manuel Roca conjures up.


PLAYERS TO WATCH:


1. ARIDANE SANTANA : The big Spanish striker had a great goalscoring record last season as he scored 9 goals in just 14 matches. He will be instrumental in Roca’s plans due to versatility. If needed he can play as a poacher and also as a target man. So it will be interesting to see his role.



2. Lluis Sastre : A graduate of the La Masia academy Sastre is a fine passer of the ball. The 34 year old Spaniard was a part of the Huesca squad who secured promotion to the La Liga in the 2017/18 season. He is a player who can fit in any system due to his technical abilities and it will be interesting to see his position. Whether he will play as an advanced playmaker or a deep-lying playmaker.



Squad



Goalkeepers: Lalbhiakhlua Jongte, Laxmikant Kattimani, Manas Dubey, Subrata Paul

Defenders: Akash Mishra, Asish Rai, Chinglensana Singh, Dimple Bhagat, Nikhil Prabhu, Odej Onaindia, Kynsailang Khongsit, Sahil Panwar

Midfielders: Abhishek Halder, Adil Khan, Sahil Tavora, Halicharan Narzary, Hitesh Sharma, Joao Victor, Laldanmawia Ralte, Lluis Sastre, Mark Zothanpuia, Mohammed Yasir, Nikhil Poojary, Souvik Chakrabarti, Sweden Fernandes

Forwards: Aridane Santana, Fran Sandaza, Ishan Dey, Joel Chianese, Lalawmpuia, Liston Colaco, Rohit Danu

Hero ISL 2020-21: ATK Mohun Bagan FC team analysis

The three times Hero ISL champions, ATK FC merged with the National Club of India as well as the I-League champions, Mohun Bagan Athletic Club to form a newly merged entity, ATK Mohun Bagan FC.



Let’s get a look into the detailed analysis of the Hero ISL debutant.



Last Season’s Performance :


Under their Spanish Head coach, Antonio Lopez Habas, the erstwhile ATK FC clinched their third title of the Hero ISL with a nail-biting 3-1 win in the finals against Chennaiyin FC at the Fatorda stadium in Goa. The match was played behind closed doors due to the pandemic outbreak.

Transfer Window dealings : The newly formed merged entity’s activeness in the transfer window was well noticeable.



Additions : The SBOTOP owned outfit had roped into Mohun Bagan’s ISL triumph’s Indian star, SK Sahil. Indian international, Subasish Bose has joined from Mumbai City FC.

Manvir Singh has joined as an Indian striker from the Gaurs after Jobby Justin suffered an ACL injury. And to add some more power to their midfield, Brisbane Roar’s Australian linchpin, Brad Inman had arrived to play for the Green and Maroons.

Spaniard defender, Tiri is all set to the bolster the defence line of ATK Mohun Bagan alongwith their probable skipper for the forthcoming season and Indian national team’s lion heart defender, Sandesh Jhingan.

AIFF Elite Academy talent, Sumit Rathi has joined in order to create history with the Hero ISL debutants and also, Indian U-17 FIFA World Cup goalkeeper Dheeraj Singh Monayem has joined the Green and Maroons. Other than that, they have retained most of the ATK FC’s Indian as well as overseas stars including the Fijian forward, Roy Krishna and also, Australian international, David Williams.



Strengths :



The kind of additions they have made, the look quite promising on paper. Their major strength is ofcourse their fast-paced counter-attacks and through balls. With fast paced players like, Edu Garcia and David Williams accompanied distributors from the midfield like Javi Hernandez, Brad Inman and SK Sahil also, with clinical finishers like Roy Krishna and Manvir Singh, ATK Mohun Bagan is surely going to rely on their quick counters alongwith through balls of pinpoint accuracy.



Weaknesses :


There are not any particular weaknesses other than that, ATK Mohun Bagan is expected to have a high-line defence and so, if the defenders fail to drop down with fast pace, then, Antonio Lopez Habas’ team may get troubled by the counter-attacks of their opponents.

Atk Mohun Bagan coaches having a discussion



Players to watch out for :



Roy Krishna :

The Fijian International had already proved himself last season with a fairytale debut season at the erstwhile ATK FC, clinching the title as their skipper and he is expected to show the same kind of determination this season, for ATK Mohun Bagan.



Sandesh Jhingan :

The Indian defence general, who has joined from the Indian giants, Bengaluru FC, is probable to be seen wearing the captain band and is also going to be the prime asset of the team’s lineup, shielding the opposition’s attacks alongside spaniard linchpin, Tiri.



Squad :



Goalkeepers: Arindam Bhattacharja, Dheeraj Singh, Arsh Shaikh, Aryan Niraj Lamba, Avilash Paul.

Defenders: Tiri, Sandesh Jhingan, Prabir Das, Pritam Kotal, Subhasish Bose, Sumit Rathi, Boris Singh Thangjam.

Midfielders:
Edu Garcia, Javier Hernandez, Carl McHugh, Glan Martins, Michael Soosairaj, Jayesh Rane, Pronay Halder, Bradden Inman, Michael Regin, Sahil Sheikh, Ningombam Engson Singh, Md. Fardin Ali Molla.

Forwards: Roy Krishna, David Williams, Manvir Singh.

ISL 2020-21: Kerala Blasters squad analysis ahead of the seventh edition of the Indian Super league.

Kerala Blasters' home kit for the ISL Season 7

The Kochi based club Kerala Blasters spent handsomely in the transfer market this season.

Kerala Blasters spent a total amount of 53 crore rupees and thus becoming the most expensive team to play in the seventh edition of the Indian Super League. But does it have the force to lift the ISL trophy?

One of the major teams in the ISL for the last 6 years, Kerala Blasters have always been an attractive outfit not only in India, but also in other countries. This is predominantly because of their huge fan base ‘the Manjapadda’ and also because of the clubs success in the past 6-7 years, finishing the league as runners up, two times. This season, after squandering lavishly in the transfer market, how big can the Blasters make it this season.

Last season’s performance:

Though Kerala Blasters finished as others two times in the hero Indian super league, last two seasons have been very difficult for the blasters, as just finished on the bottom half of the points table on both the seasons. Last year, the team struggled defensively, as the field in keeping the defence intact and often conceded a lot of goals in a single game.

Transfer market dealings:

As said earlier, Kerala Blasters have spent the most amount of money in the transfer market. The blasters where very active throughout the transfer window for the upcoming season, and often got people talking for their signings, and the amount of money they spent.

In fact the two most valuable players to play in the upcoming season of the Indian Super League, will be donning the colours of Kerala blasters. These players are Gary Hooper and Vincent Gomez, for whom the club has paid 9.9 and 6.6 crore respectively. Gary Hooper was bought from A League outfit Wellington Phoenix, and was the most valuable player to play in the season’s Indian Super League.

Whereas Vincent made his move from the Spanish third division. Other than these two players the club has bought some other talented foreign players, like Bakary Kone (3.33 crore), Jordan Murray(3.33 crore), Facundo Pereyra (3.33 crore) and Costa Nhamoinesu (2.9 crore). Some Indian players to watch out from the squad are Sahal Abdul Ahmed, who doesn’t need no introduction in the ISL, Nishu Kumar, who was bought by the club from Bengaluru FC, Jessel Corneira, Puitea Rahul KP, etc.

Released Members:

Kerala Blasters got rid of their head coach Mr. Eelco Schattorie, who failed to make an impression last season. The club rather appointed Kibu Vicuna, the Polish head coach, who has a lot of experience and also knows Indian football very well, as he has won the I league with Mohun Bagan in the 2019-20 I league season.

Another big name, which the club let go was Bartholomew Ogbeche. The Nigerian player was undoubtedly the star player for the blasters. Although his team’s performance version good throughout the season, he didn’t fail to make an impression, as he was the highest goal scorer in the league with 15 goals.

Strengths:

One of the major strengths of this club, is its attack. The team’s attack has players such as Gary Hooper, Sahal Abdul Ahmed, Facundo Pereyra, Rahul KP, Jordan Murray, Puitea, etc. And as the head coach of Kerala blasters, Mr. Kibu Vicuna has himself told us in his interview that he likes to play attacking, by dominating position and pressing high and exploiting the defense. Kerala blasters wheel Shivani pose a great attacking threat on any opponent they face.

Also, last season the club’s major default was that it wasn’t defensively organized. This season the scenerio seems different, as the Blasters have brought in some impressive players, to help the defense. These players including Bakary Kone, Nishu Kumar, Vincent Gomez, Jessel Corneira,etc. The Goalkeeping duties have been given to Bilal Khan.

Weaknesses:

Though the club has managed to build a pretty strong team, one of the major problem with the squad is it’s midfeild. Although the team has some pretty impressive defensive midfielders and wingers, the squad lacks finish in the centre midfield. And also partially in positional midfield.

Another huge setback, with the squad is that it lacks quality Indian players. Kerala Blasters undoubtedly have some of the best foreign players in this season of the Indian super league. Also the club has some great Indian players, but these are only a few. A large part of the Indian players of the squad, are filled with players, who haven’t made an impression in the eyes of the people as of yet. But in football we can never doubt the capability of a player.

Hero ISL 2020: Dafa News hammer out a deal with Chennaiyin FC, and continue on being their Principal sponsor for a second consecutive year.

Online sports news portal DafaNews to continue with Chennaiyin FC as Principal Sponsor for a second consecutive year, following a successful association in the 2019-20 season. DafaNews will continue to proudly appear on the back of the CFC jersey for the entirety of the 2020-21 campaign.

“It is a pleasure to have a leading brand like DafaNews continuing to back us, quite literally, for a second year running. It shows the reliability they see in partnering with us, especially given the memorable run we had in the previous season. We thank them for the continued support and look forward to more success in the time ahead,” said CFC co-owner Vita Dani on the renewal with DafaNews.

“After a productive first season we had with Chennaiyin, we’re happy to continue for a second year. We see great merit in continuing our association with brand CFC, in what will also be a unique campaign played out in Goa,” said Nikos Diakoumopoulos, Managing Director, DafaNews, on the news of continuing their association with CFC.

Fatkhullo of Chennaiyin FC during their training session

Chennaiyin FC kick off their seventh ISL campaign against Jamshedpur FC on Tuesday November 24th at Tilak Maidan. With supporters unable to attend games at the stadium this season, they can enjoy live CFC match updates, news, exclusive interviews, trivia quizzes and much more through the DafaNews website and app. The dynamic DafaNews interface is especially catered towards providing fans an unparalleled experience as they root for Chennaiyin Fc from afar.

Spain thrash incompetent Germany 6-0

Germany were absolutely humiliated by a rampant Spain side who smashed 6 goals against the Die Mannschaft.


Spaniards dealt a blow in the 1st few minutes as Sergio Canales had to be subbed off after suffering an injury. On came Napoli’s Fabian Ruiz. The first goal came in the 17th minute when Alvaro Morata headed in Fabian’s corner from the far post and looked to have scored another in the 25th minute when he tapped in Ferran Torres’ cross but it was disallowed due to offside.

Alvaro Morata celebrates for Spain versus Germany


Ferran Torres had two good opportunities around the 30 minute mark but he couldn’t convert any of them. He did get his goal in the 33rd minute when Fabian’s header hit the crossbar and he smashed the rebound home. After 5 minutes due to some poor marking from Germany Rodri superbly headed in Koke’s corner to make it 3-0. In the 43rd minute captain Ramos was forced off due to an injury and on came Manchester City defender Eric Garcia.

Spain started the 2nd half just as they had started the 1st one and almost scored but Manuel Neuer brilliantly denied Leipzig forward Dani Olmo. In the 55th minute Spain scored on the break when Fabian Ruiz put Jose Gaya through and he unselfishly squared it to Torres who drilled it past a helpless Neuer. 2 minutes later it could easily have been 5 but Rodri put his effort over the crossbar. In the 71st minute Spain did make it five as Ferran Torres completed his hat-trick with a stunning curling strike.

SEVILLE, SPAIN – NOVEMBER 17: (BILD ZEITUNG OUT) Ferran Torres of Spain celebrates after scoring his team’s fourth goal during the UEFA Nations League group stage match between Spain and Germany at Estadio de La Cartuja on November 17, 2020 in Seville, Spain. (Photo by Javier Montano/DeFodi Images via Getty Images)

Germany could have gotten a consolation but it wasn’t there day as Serge Gnabry hit the crossbar with a rocket in the 79th minute. In the 89th minute Spain rounded off there performance with a 6th goal as substitute Mikel Oyarzabal tapped into an empty net from a pass by Jose Gaya.


With this win La Roja are through to the Nations League finals. This match also exposed Germany’s glaring deficiencies and it will be upto Joachim Low to fix these errors ahead of the world cup qualifiers.

Kerala Blasters annouce EWIRE Softtech as their Supporting Sponsor

Kerala Blasters FC announce EWIRE Softtech Pvt. Ltd, an ISO 9001:2015 certified Fintech Company, as their Supporting Sponsor for the upcoming season of the Indian Super League.

Kerala Blasters logo

EWIRE is nested in Kochi with its headquarters in Delhi and are pioneers in providing cashless service-oriented, cloud agnostic NextGen Digital banking solutions with a futuristic approach towards digitalization and an innovative virtual banking platform. The core of their offerings is to complement and add value to the society in digital and neo banking space. Through this association, EWIRE’s logo will appear on the back of the left shorts in the Official Kerala Blasters FC kits.

“This association with the Kerala Blasters team, is a honour to us and at EWIRE Soft we are committed to provide the best possible support through our network as well as ongoing benefits to all supporters of the club.”, said Yunus Puthenpurayil, CEO, EWIRE Softtech.

Nikhil Bhardwaj, Director, Kerala Blasters FC said, “We are pleased to associate with EWIRE and welcome them to our family. We’re always looking for relevant associations and avenues to engage and augment our fans’ experiences. EWIRE has a vast network of virtual banking solutions and banking partnerships that will benefit the entire Blasters ecosystem. We look forward to what will be a mutually beneficial and fruitful journey for both brands.”

ISL 2021: FC Goa Team Analysis ahead of a challenging season 7

FC Goa are ready to smash ! The Gaurs had a mixed transfer window as they lost some gems while also recruiting some great talents.


LAST SEASON’S PERFORMANCE:
Under coach Lobera Goa were rampant last season but due to some differences between Lobera and the board he was shockingly sacked. His assistant Clifford Miranda managed to make them league leaders but were knocked out in the semis by Chennaiyin FC.


COACHING STAFF:
Juan Ferrando has been appointed as the new head coach. Clifford Miranda remains assistant coach. The goalkeeping coach is Virender Singh and conditioning coaches are Roma Cullinera and Javi Gonzalez.


TRANSFERS:
As said before it was a mixed window for The Gaurs.
INS:
Goa signed a staggering total of 11 players including 4 Spanish players.The most notable being striker Igor Angulo who scored 63 goals in 106 games in the Estraslaska.

They secured a loan deal for Australian defender James Donachie. They also promoted 6 of their top youth prospects to the first team. It’s a testament to the great work being done in the academy.


OUTS:
The Gaurs lost probably their best player in Ferran Corominas who joined Spanish outlet CD Atletico Baleares. They also lost key players like Mourtada Fall , Hugo Boumous , Mandar Rao Desai who followed their manager to Mumbai City FC.


TACTICS AND FORMATION:
FC GOA have always been a brand of attacking football. Being coached by a Spanish manager over the past 3 seasons they love to pass their opposition to death.
Their best formation will be a 4-2-3-1 with Edu Bedia the skipper and Lenny Rodriguez as the pivots. This formation is a very balanced one and provides good support to both the attack and the defence.


STRENGTHS:
Goa’s main strength lies in their Spanish core which will be able to express themselves even more due to the presence of a Spanish Manager. They also have a good blend of both youth and experience which is always great for any team.
WEAKNESSES:
Goa’s main weakness lies in the fact that a major part of their squad have never played in India before. Plus the sales of some their best players is bound to affect them.


PLAYERS TO WATCH OUT FOR:
1. IGOR ANGULO: One of the graduates of the fine Athletic Bilbao academy the Basque striker is a prolific goalscorer scoring 147 goals throughout his career. 63 of those came playing for Polish club Górnik Zabrze over the past 4 seasons. It will be really interesting to see what role he will be given by coach Ferrando.


2. EDU BEDIA: Goa’s skipper will be playing a key role in midfield and he might even be the key to unlock the opponent’s defence after key midfielder Ahmed Jahouh left . A graduate of the great La Masia academy Edu will be looking to rack up a few assists linking up with fellow Spaniards Noguera and Angulo.

FC Goa player in action during ISL 2019-20202


SQUAD:
Goalkeepers: Mohammad Nawaz, Naveen Kumar, Shubham Dhas, Dylan D’ Silva.

Defenders: Sarineo Fernandes, Aiban Dohling, Ivan Gonzalez, James Donachie, Leander D’cunha, Mohamed Ali, Sanson Pereira, Saviour Gama , Seriton Fernandes.

Midfielders: Alberto Noguera, Alexander Romario Jesuraj, Brandon Fernandes, Edu Bedia, Flan Gomes, Jorge Ortiz Mendoza, Lenny Rodrigues, Nestor Dias, Phrangki Buam, Princeton Rebello, Redeem Tlang, Seiminlen Doungel.

Forwards: Aaren D’silva, Devendra Murgaonkar, Igor Angulo, Ishan Pandita, Makan Winkle Chothe.

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ISL 2020-21 : Mumbai City FC Squad Analysis

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.

Mumbai City Fc during their practice match ahead of ISL 7

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.

Additions :

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.

Released Players:

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.

Strengths :

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.

Weaknesses :

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.

Hugo Boumous :

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.

Squad :

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.

FC Goa ready to roll for a power-packed season!

A new ISL season, a new look FC GOA. The 2015 runner ups have given a major overhaul to their team ahead of the new season.

Under head coach Sergio Lobera The Gaurs were rampant last season but due to some difference in opinion between the board and Lobera he was sacked. His assistant Clifford Miranda managed to keep them league leaders but were knocked out in the semis by Chennaiyin.

Sergio Lobera is the new coach of Mumbai City FC and will be looking to take revenge when the two teams meet this year. Goa’s talisman Ferran Corominas left to sign for Spanish club CD Atlético Baleares- a huge blow for the Gaurs. . FC Goa have appointed Juan Ferrando as their new coach. One of the major signings to look out for is Spanish striker Igor Angulo. A graduate from the fine Athletic Bilbao academy he bagged 63 goals in 102 appearances for Górnik Zabrze in the Ekstraklasa over the past 4 seasons. FC Goa have always been playing attacking football.

FC Goa with their league winners title after topping the league

They love to pass their opposition to death which is expected from a side who have been a coached by a Spanish man over the past 3 seasons. Their ideal formation would be 4-2-3-1 due to their brilliant depth in midfield. It would also be a perfect formation to stop counters as the opponents would have to cross the two holding midfielders before even trying to run at the defence.

FC GOA also recently formed a strategic partnership with German giants RB Leipzig and they will be looking to perform as well as their German counterparts. A lot of expectations are there on The Gaurs and let’s hope they can headbutt there way to the title.

Hero ISL : Organisers introduce 5 substitutions rule ahead of the 2020-21 season

The most high profile football league in the sub continent is all set to begin it’s seventh edition starting from November 20.

Inspired from the top european leagues, the ISL will be allowing the 5 substitutions rule in upcoming season, reports TOI. The rule was adopted by the top european leagues for the players to keep up well when they returned to Football after a long gap due to the Coronavirus Pandemic.

Players during their training session ahead of ISL 2020-2021

Except the English Premier League, all other European leagues including the UEFA Champions League and the Europa league have implemented the 5 substitutions rule for the 2020-21 season.

The 5 substitutions rule will be an added advantage for all the clubs as it will reduce the workload of the players and will also reduce the chances of injuries.

The organisers have made no changes apart from the addition of the 5 substitutions rule. The Hero ISL season 7 kicks off on November 20 with ATK MohunBagan FC and Kerala Blasters FC playing the opening fixture.

Hero ISL 2020-21 : Newcastle United Legend Steven Taylor to lead Odisha FC

Odisha FC announce Steven Taylor as the captain of the Bhubaneswar-based side ahead of the seventh season of the Hero Indian Super League (ISL).

The former Newcastle United defender was instated as Odisha FC’s new captain in a team meeting today. Head Coach Mr. Stuart Baxter announced his decision before citing Steven’s experience and leadership qualities as the pillars behind the appointment.

Steven will lead Odisha FC as captain for the upcoming season. As you already must have noticed in the training sessions, his intent to mentor the young players, commanding presence and winning mentality shall help the team enormously. I am sure that he will be one of the best leaders in the Indian Super League and the team shall be able to use his qualities to maximum effect,” the OFC Head Coach said.

Steven Taylor
Odisha FC Skipper Steven Taylor with Vinit Rai

Steven was delighted with his new responsibilities and the Englishman’s enthusiasm was apparent in his address to the team. “We are a family. We have to stand by each other and be there for each other on and off the field. Keep believing in yourself and I am confident that we shall have a special season. We will learn in every training session and in every game and we will grow from those experiences. I am happy to be here amongst all of you,” the experienced defender expressed.

Steven Taylor during Odisha FC’s pre-season training session in Goa

Taylor is poised to lead the team out against Hyderabad FC on the 23rd of November, 2020 in the first game of what promises to be a unique season

Idrissa Sylla : NorthEast United add Guinean Striker to Bolster their attack

With the 7th edition of Hero Indian Super League just a few weeks away from kickoff, Northeast United FC have started gearing up for the next season. To Bolster their attack the Highlanders have acquired the services of former Guinean international Idrissa Sylla.

The Guinean striker started his career with French 3rd division club Le Mans FC and making a total of 52 appearances and scoring 14 goals between 2010 and 2013. In 2011 he was loaned out to another French side SC Bastia in which he found the back of the net 7 times in 27 appearances.

Idrissa Sylla

The 29 year then moved to Belgium and represented Zulte Waregem and Anderlecht in 3 seasons making 50 plus appearances and scoring 17 goals for both the clubs.

His next spell saw him moving to England to represent Queen Park Rangers. He has 61 caps and 17 goals in the English second division for The Superhoops.

Idrissa Sylla then returned to Belgium and joined his former side Zulte Wargem in 2019. In his second spell with the Belgian club he made 18 appearances and scored 3 goals. He was loaned out to another Belgian top division club Oostende for the remainder of the season and he scored 2 goals in 10 appearances.

Idrrissa Sylla celebrates a goal with his QPR teammates

On the International front, Idrissa Sylla has 27 caps and 5 goals for his National team. He was a part of the Squad that took part in Africa Cup of Nations in 2015.

Standing tall at 6’2 feet the Target Man is proven goalscorer and an Aerial threat for the opposition. He comes in with tons of quality experience under his belt and that comes in as an added advantage for the Highlanders.

Idrissa Sylla is referred to as Waddle due to him possessing a similar style of play to Chris Waddle.

Indian Premier League 2020 : Five uncapped youngsters to watch out for in UAE.

One of the most prominent attributes of the Indian Premier league is the ability to introduce fresh talents to global audience.

No matter how well the youngsters do in domestic or age group cricket the confidence and experience they gain by rubbing shoulders with established international players expedites their growth at a crucial juncture in their careers

Ravindra Jadeja celebrates his wicket for India

Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin , Jasprit Bumrah , Hardik Pandya and many more Indian Cricketers made their way to International cricket after excelling in the Indian Premier League.

Jasprit Bumrah in picture smiling while playing a match for India

The 13th edition of the Indian Premier League is being held in United Arab Emirates from September 19th to November 8, let’s take a look at five Indian uncapped youngsters who have the potential to steal the spotlight .

Yashasvi Jaiswal (Rajasthan Royals ₹2.4crs)

Jaiswal in action for India in U-19 world cup

He was by the far most impressive batsman in India’s runners up finish at the U-19 world cup earlier this year. 400runs from 6 matches including a hundred and four half centuries he was the highest scorer.

Ravi Bishnoi (Kings X1 Punjab ₹2crs)

Indian Premier League
Bishnoi in action for Kings XI Punjab

Bishnoi was the standout player for India at the U-19 world cup in South Africa this year .The leg spinner impressed one and all with this skills fiery attitude returning with 17 wickets in six games to be the highest wicket taker in the tournament . There is a good chance the youngster could play consistently in the upcoming Indian Premier League season considering that he is the most promising wrist spinner

Next comes..

Devdutt Padikkal (Royal Challengers Banglore ₹20lakh)

Devdutt Padikkal smashed a half century on his debut for RCB

He may not be an U-19 star but in terms of domestic white ball cricket the 20 year old left handed opener was arguably the biggest name last season . playing for Karnataka he set the stage on fire with one outstanding performance .There is a good chance Padikkal will edge out Patel for the other spot since AB de Villiers. While he has smashed a half century for RCB in his debut match in Indian Premier League.

Next Comes …

Kamlesh Nagarkoti (Kolkata Knight Riders ₹3.2crs)

Kamlesh Nagarkoti will be playing his first match for KKR

He hasn’t played a professional match since February 2018 which makes him an odd pick for list. However, he generated that kind of pace with relatively small frame for a fast bowler. He was bought for ₹3.2 cr by KKR in 2018 auction but hasn’t played a single game for 2 seasons due to health reasons. He will be hopeful that he can finally play in the Indian Premier league.

Last but not the least

Ruturaj Gaikwad (Chennai Super Kings ₹20 lakh)

Chennai Super Kings batsman Ruturaj Gaikwad in picture

He is a 23 years old right handed batsman who has been the highest run getter for India A games over the past 2 years with 843 runs in 15 innings. Gaikwad is known for his solid technique and attractive shots. The three times champions CSK have Gaikwad , Ambati Rayudu, Murali Vijay and Shane Watson are at the top order. All the indications from the camp are that they are banking on this young gun to fill the massive space for Suresh Raina .

I would like to conclude that this 2020 Indian Premier League would be a blast this season with new developments in the matches.

Manchester City thump Wolves 3-1 as they show intent to win the title

Last season, Manchester City finished second in the Premier League and were 18 points behind the champions Liverpool. The team even tough had the quality, but some hard luck and injuries took their toll on Pep’s team.

Another major reason for their catastrophe last season was their lack of consistency and their unreliable defense . At the end of last season, Pep honestly accepted his team’s weaknesses and their faults and sought to address them as fast as possible.

Yesterday, when the Cityzens faced the wanderers, throughout the game the intent that Pep assured, was seen. But there were also some common errors, which exploited City last season.

Manchester City at present are among some of the biggest clubs in world football. The kind of legacy they have built over the last decade seems like a blessing to world football. They also have some of the best players in the world like De Bruyne, Sterling, Mahrez, etc. and the architect Pep Guardiola, who is one of the best coaches in the world.

City defender Ake in action versus Wolves

Despite all these factors, last season Manchester City had a disappointing season, as they finished 18 points behind the PL champions and also shockingly lost to Lyon in the quarter finals of the UCL.

Last season, the main reason behind this downfall was their defence, who let the team down, when it mattered. Also, the lack of consistency of the team took its toll . But Manchester City were self critic and understood their mistakes from the last season and sought to make a comeback both in England as well as in Europe.

City players during warmup session at Molineux

With all the talks and debates ongoing, Manchester City started their new season against Wolves, on the 21st of September at the Molineux. Wolves, were definitely a team to be feared of, as the team had grown really strong under Nuno Espirito Santo and had some of the standout players from the last season, like Raul Jimenez, Adama Traore, Conor Coady and Rui Patricio.

As the game started, Manchester City were playing the ball well and were making constant moves and inside the first quarter of the game succeeded in winning a penalty, when a run made by Kevin De Bruyne for the ball was interupted by Saiss. Kevin De Bruyne, made no mistake in converting it from the spot and making the score line 1-0.

Manchester City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne tackled by Saiss
Wolves defender Saiss tackles De Bruyne inside the penalty box

A few minutes later, in the 32nd minute of the game, an absolute masterpiece by the city attack, helped Phil Foden score his first goal of the new season and an really important one for his redemption against the happenings of the last few weeks. Thus the first half ended in with Manchester City taking a 2 goal lead over Wolves.

Foden celebrates with his teammates after scoring the second goal for City

Later as the second half began, Wolves looked much better after an horrific first half performance. They were making runs, creating chances and thus testing the defense, which once again failed to prove itself as there were at timrs few major casualities with the defense. And these casualities, finally resulted in Wolves scoring in the 78th min after the Manchester City defense went to sleep, leaving Jimenez in lots of free space, who made the most out of this opportunity.

Wolves striker Raul Gimenez heads the goal for his team

After conceding the goal, the match became very intersting, as now there was only a single goal sperating both the teams. But the City defense somehow held on to the incoming threat for the next few minutes, before Gabriel Jesus’s shot on goal, took a big deflection and hit the back of the net, ending the match 3-1.

Gabriel Jesus struck the third goal for City versus Wolves

Despite the fact that City’s defense was a bit sloppy at times, City’s overall performance was really great and a pleasure to watch. However City should not take their defensive problems lightly and address them quickly, as the former champions Liverpool have already started their season with two wins, City need to keep up pace with them, if they want to compete for the Premier League title this time around.

Federico Gallego : North East United FC retain the Uruguayan linchpin

Northeast United FC had a forgetful last season. An injury hit team finished 9th above Hyderabad FC in the points table. The Highlanders have retained the services Uruguayan dynamo Federico Gallego for the 2020-21 season.


The Northeast United FC skipper missed the 1st half of the 6th edition as he suffered a major injury against former ISL Champions Bengaluru FC in the 2nd leg of the Semi Final in the 2018-19 season.

Federico Gallego’s ability to set up matches in the final third, his unrelenting tenacity to win back the ball in the defensive half makes him a complete midfielder. Thus keeping hold of him represents a big step for NorthEast, Who will be undergoing a massive rebuild this season under New Head Coach Gerard Nus Casanova.

Northeast’s No. 10 was instrumental for guiding them to their maiden play-off spot in the 2018-19 season. Under the tutoring of Dutch Manager Eelco Schattorie. The Uruguayan midfielder has been everywhere from cleaning up in defence to initiating attacks. While he has also popped up with some crucial goals for the Guwahati based club.

Having never played professional football outside the leagues of Uruguay prior to his ISL move. Gallego has proved himself to be and inspiring purchase. The 28-year-old will add further Latin American flavour to NorthEast United’s midfield due to his non-stop hustle on the pitch.

Federico gallego

Federico Gallego has for sure become a fan favourite. Him being tied down to a new contract comes in as a good news for the fans.

Defending Champions Liverpool continue to Dominate England as they go past Chelsea in a 2-0 victory at the Bridge

A warm Sunday afternoon in West London saw a ‘Super Mature’ Liverpool side go past Frank Lampard’s Blues courtesy of an early second half brace by Senegalese international Sadio Mane.

The 2-0 defeat against the defending champions was a reality check for the Blues even after spending handsomely in the Transfer Market.

Liverpool superstar Sadio Mane
Sadio Mane celebrates versus Chelsea

Chelsea started defensively from the first whistle itself. They relied on counter attacks and it did work out a few times but their attacking swagger was totally missing. The turning point of the game came in just before the halftime when Christensen bought down Sadio Mane and was given his marching orders.

LONDON, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 20: Sadio Mane of Liverpool celebrates after scoring his team’s second goal during the Premier League match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on September 20, 2020 in London, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

The 2nd half saw Liverpool’s latest recruit Thiago Alcantara coming on as an substitute for Skipper Jordan Henderson.
5 minutes into the second half and boom, the visitors took the lead when Liverpool’s No. 10 broke the deadlock and scored one past Kepa Arrizabalaga. While Liverpool’s quality crafted their opener, their second was handed to them as a gift from the Spanish Goalkeeper.

From the left Keita, Mane, Firmino and Salah celebrate their second goal versus Chelsea.

Thiago made a mistake and fouled Timo Werner inside Penalty box and Jorginho was called up to take the spot kick. But, Alisson had Thiago covered and did not let the Blues spoil the Spaniard’s debut. The Brazilian Wall denied the Italian and managed to register his first clean sheet of the season.

Fabinho played as Centre Back a new position for him.

Luck was on Liverpool’s side as Chelsea were without new signings Thiago Silva, Ben Chilwell and Hakim Ziyech who could have made the difference. Christian Pulisic is out injured. Goalkeeper Edouard Mendy isn’t officially registered as a Chelsea player.

Chelsea’s Italian midfielder Jorginho (R) has a penalty saved by Liverpool’s Brazilian goalkeeper Alisson Becker during the English Premier League football match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge in London on September 20, 2020. (Photo by Matt Dunham / POOL / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or ‘live’ services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No video emulation. Social media in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No use in betting publications, games or single club/league/player publications. /

All of that led to an extremely defensive and tentative display from Lampard’s side. Kai Havertz struggled out wide once again, while the defensive issues remain for Chelsea as Kepa had a nightmare on the red card situation and for the second goal.

Lionel Messi : Some Interesting Facts about the Living Legend

The Argentine Soccer player, Lionel Messi, is one of the greatest soccer players of all time. The Forwarder and Captain of La Liga Club Barcelona doesn’t need an introduction as this man is known worldwide for his electrifying performances on the field. There are some interesting facts about this goal machine which probably you didn’t know before.
the signature of Messi on a napkin

Messi Signed Contract with Barcelona on a Napkin

Barcelona’s Technical Secretary of that time, Charly Rexach, was so afraid to lose the 13 years old Lionel Messi after he has seen Messi’s seven minutes of trial performance. He was so impressed that he wanted to sign him up fast.

At the moment, he only had a napkin to write on. Rexach’s urgency made him write the contract on the napkin itself ( Goalaso.tv ). Gaggioli still has it stored in a safe of the Credit Andorra bank.

A Girl Refused Messi

We all know that the only girl in Messi’s life is Antonela Roccuzzo. But there’s another girl in the story. Her name is Macarena Lemos, who is a model from Rosario. Well, we all know Leo’s love for Rosario girls. They were in a relationship when Macarena was 14 years old, and Messi was 18 years old.

The relationship was somewhere from 2005 to 2006. But the parents of Macarena initiated the break-up as her father thought that Leo was not good enough for her daughter as he was a from a low-income family.

Lionel Messi with his girlfriend Antonella

Messi doesn’t Know English

Leo Messi has spent the majority of his life living in Spanish countries. This legend can speak in only one language that is Spanish. Messi does not know English. He even uses translators for this reason.

Ronaldo once told that he acted as a Translator between Messi and Neymar because none understood English. Antonela, Messi’s wife, sometimes acts as a Translator for him.

Eveey smiling Messi for Barcelona

Messi has a Tattoo of Antonela’s Lips

The Barca superstar, Messi, posted a shirtless picture of him with his girlfriend, Antonela, where he is flaunting his new tattoo right above his groin. This is a lip-shaped red tattoo. It has a significant meaning as it is a tribute to his love of life, Antonela Roccuzzo. Messi and Antonela live a life full of love with their three children.

However, this extraordinary personality will always remain an epitome of interest to discover.

IPL 2020 MI vs CSK : Clash of the Titans

The wait is finally over for IPL 2020. It’s 19th September and India’s biggest cricketing event, Indian Premier League is back with it’s 13th edition.

The opening match of the season is going to be a screamer as it is the defending champions of IPL, Mumbai Indians versus the favourites, Chennai Super Kings. Mumbai have the most number of IPL titles for their name while, Chennai have their name just behind Mumbai.

Captains of both teams Rohit Sharma and MS Dhoni

The match will be played at Sharjah stadium and with a blend of dusty pitch in the match, the pitch is going to favour the batsmen. The pitch conditions are as usual that is, it will be having less bounce and the spinners will be having the advantage during the second innings.

Suryakumar Yadav shakes hand with Imran Tahir

With a pretty good batting lineup, Mumbai will be having an advantage with big hitters like Rohit Sharma, then Kieron Pollard who is going through an astonishing form who will be bolstered by Hardik Pandya and Krunal Pandya. On the other hand, Chennai wil come up with a cluster of experienced players to yield results.

IPL 2020 Csk vs MI
Shane Watson smashes during his match versus Mumbai

This time Chennai must be going for an experiment for the alternative of Suresh Raina who announced his complete retirement from all cricketing formats on 15th August. Also, Mumbai Indians should make some changes with regards to the pitch conditions if they bat first.

On summing up, it can be concluded both the teams may do some tactical changes in order to buckle up for the ‘El Classico of Indian Premier League‘. This year’s IPL is surely going to blast off with a cracking match.

Steven Taylor : Odisha FC’s latest addition to boost their Defensive Prowess

Odisha FC add experienced and former new castle and English international Steven Taylor to their squad to add a prime finesse and lots of experience to their satisfying defense consisting of Gaurav Bora, Narayan Das and Subham Sarangi.

Newcastle United’s Steven Taylor celebrates after heading in the equaliser

Steven Taylor was born in Greenwich, London on the 23rd of January 1986.At the age of 14 taylor joined the new castle United youth academy after being scouted at cramlington juniors.

Prior to being a defender tailor was a striker who at the age of 13 switch to defence . After that he finished his studies and started his journey of becoming a professional footballer when he was nearly 17 years old. Then he played for few smaller clubs on loan until 2003 after which he returned to New castle.

On 25th of march 2004 in the UEFA cup fourth round second leg tie against Mallorca, taylor made his debut for the first team after coming on as a substitute and became the youngest debutant for the magpies’ in European competition, which was wistfully broken by Andy carroll in 2006.

Steven taylor
Steven Taylor of Newcastle United

Three days later against Bolton wanderers Steven also made his premier League debut And played as a right back. His first few seasons with New castle was really disheartening and was a really tough time for him as a result of various injuries and some bad luck.

But the 2006-07 season turned out to be a breakthrough season for him as he scored as he scored his debut senior gold in a UEFA cup match and also scored his first League goal against Blackburn rovers as a result of which he started playing more frequently.

Steven Taylor during his days ta Petersborough

The following seasons saw a few ups and downs for Steven Taylor as a result of injuries and the bad performance of the club and also rumours of him leaving the club
But good times for tailor also came as he now became the teams first choice in defence and started to get more recognition.

After that, on the 3rd of June 2016 after 12 years with the club, he left Newcastle United and signed for major League soccer club Portland timbers. After a long span of twelve years with Newcastle United, Steven was not able to be consistent with other clubs as in a short span of 2 years he played for 3 different clubs, after which he finally joined Wellington phoenix where he played for the next two season and also wore the captain’s armband before joining the Indian super league with Odisha FC.


His international career with England wasn’t much satisfying because even tough he played for for the u-17 and u-21 squad, he never got to play for the senior team even though he was included in the squad on 2 occasions.

Nevertheless, he is is a great player with lots of experience as he played which some of the best players of that time playing in the premier League and also as a part of the English national team and we hope that he helps Odisha with his experience and his skill so that they can have a season to remember.

Liverpool take Lead over Leeds in a 7 goal thrilling encounter at Anfield

On the 13th of september, when defending champions Liverpool hosted newly promoted Leeds United at Anfield, the match was highly anticipated to be a thrilling contest, and the match truly lived up to its expectations as a 7 goal show and late drama took place, eventually resulting in the Reds emerging victorious.

On the first matchday of the Premier League 2020-21 , Liverpool faced Bielsa’s Leeds at Anfield, the match was pre anticipated to be intense and thrilling both by the coaches and the players . this feeling was habitual as both teams had a really impressive style of play, as Bielsa’s team played with their Madcap style of play and Jurgen’s side with their heavy metal football.

Liverpool
Soccer Football – Premier League – Liverpool v Leeds United – Anfield, Liverpool, Britain – September 12, 2020 Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah scores their fourth goal from the penalty spot to complete his hat-trick. Pool via REUTERS/Phil Noble

As the match started, inside the first 3 minutes , Leeds conceded a penalty as Salah’s shot hit Koch’s arm. Salah didn’t fail to capitalise from the spot and scored Liverpool’s first goal of the season , to give them the lead. A Few minutes later, Leeds equalised courtesy of a cracking goal from Jack Harrison and in the process scored Leeds’ first Premier League goal in 16 years.

Leeds United striker Jack Harrison nets Leeds first goal in the Premier League since 2004 against Liverpool

After that, the goals came thick and fast for both teams. Liverpool scored 2 more goals inside the the next 20 minutes as both Virgil and Salah scored , whereas Leeds scored 1, thanks to Van Djik’s lazy clearance and Bamford’s quick instincts. Thus the first half of the game ended 3-2, with Liverpool leading.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 12: (THE SUN OUT, THE SUN ON SUNDAY OUT) Virgil van Dijk of Liverpool scoring the second goal making the score 2-1 and celebrates during the Premier League match between Liverpool and Leeds United at Anfield on September 12, 2020 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Then, in the 66th minute, Liverpool won the ball high up the pitch and made the most out of the opportunity as  Mateusz Klich scored a breath taking volley, as Leeds equalized for the 3rd time in the game. After that , both teams were defending well in order to not concede in the dying moments of the game.

Leeds United players celebrate their goal against Liverpool

Inside the last ten minutes of the game, Liverpool started to press really high with great intent to score the winner. This high pressing eventually paid off in the 87th minute , when Rodrigo pinned down Fabinho inside the penalty box , awarding Liverpool a penalty and Salah made the most out of the opportunity and scored the winner for the Reds and completed his hat – trick as well . Consequently , the match ended 4-3 with Liverpool emerging victorious in an close and intense contest.

Salah scores a stunner versus Leeds to provide Liverpool with a lead over Leeds.

Even tough Liverpool won the match, but Bielsa and his team won the hearts of the fans as the gave a mesmerising performance at Anfield against the defending champions and were able to exploit a defence consisting of Van Djik , Robertson , Alexander-Arnold and Gomez, that too 3 times which is quite rarely seen against the present Liverpool side.

After watching the match and the way Leeds performed, one thing that we can say for sure is that the season would be really promising for Leeds and there will be plenty to watch for.

Sunil Chhetri : A Homage to the Captain, Leader, Legend of Indian Football

Sunil Chhetri is a true icon and a true revolutionist, who completely transformed the footballing scene of India. A true workaholic who’s only ambition is to improve the condition of football in India. What he has done for the country can never be matched through any form of thanksgiving. However, this is a small homage paid to him for whatever he has done for Indian football.

Sunil Chhetri was born on 3rd August, 1984 to K. B. Chhetri and Sushila Chhetri in SecunderabadTelanganaIndia. Chhetri’s parents were also footballers, so the family had a footballing history.

Sunil Chhetri
Sunil Chhetri the captain of Indian Football team.

Sunil Chettri started playing football from a very tender age , playing in various local tournaments. What awaited for Sunil was an unbelievable journey towards Indian football. Sunil left his studies after passing 12th in order to pursue his dream of becoming a pro footballer.

He began his professional career from Mohun Bagan in 2002 when he was 25. He played 3 seasons for Mohun Bagan scoring a total of 8 goals. After that he played for a number of Indian clubs like East Bengal, Dempo, Churchill Brothers etc.

Sunil Chhetri also played for some foreign clubs like Kansas City Wizards and Sporting Club Portugal. But sadly his overseas career wasn’t as successful as his career in the subcontinent, and therefore, Sunil decided to thereafter play in India itself.

On 12th of June of 2005, Sunil made his international debut against arch rivals Pakistan. Till date, Sunil has 115 caps for India scoring a total of 72 goals, which make him the second active player with the most amount of international goals after Cristiano Ronaldo.

Sunil has also won a whole lot of Awards on a person level. He won the AIFF player of the year award, a record 6 times, AFC Asian Icon, Football Ratna Award (first recipient) by Delhi Football Association.

In 2011, Sunil won The Arjuna Award, by the Government of India in recognition of his outstanding achievement in sports and in 2019, he was awarded the prestigious Padma Shri Award. It is India’s  4th highest civilian award .

Sunil Chhetri celebrates a goal for India

He also achieved a lot with the Indian national team , winning the SAFF Championship twice, The AFC Challenge Cup and 3 times The Nehru Cup. Even today , after achieving so much he is still hungry for more and is always working hard so that he can always give his best

Today, as when we look at Sunil Chhetri’s journey, we realize that the man had a really tough journey as success wasn’t by his side from the start. Sunil had a lot of ups and downs in his career but he fought against all the odds that he encountered in his journey with sheer determination and patience and eventually became a Legend of Indian Football.

Lluis Sastre : Hyderabad FC adds a flare of Tiki-Taka

Indian Super League side, Hyderabad FC signs Spanish midfielder Lluis Sastre from AEK Larnaca.

Lluis Sastre

The Hyderabad FC fans were elighted as the signing was announced officially on their Twitter handle. Sastre had played for SD Huesca in 2018/19 season and for CD Leganes in 2017/18 season in LaLiga.

Lluis Sastre versus FC Barcelona’s Neymar jr

This will be one of the most crucial signings of this season. A player who has faced teams like FC Barcelona and Real Madrid will be able to showcase a deep sense of experience on the pitch for the Hyderabad side. Also, he will also be able to fuel his team’s defense since he plays the role of a sweeper or the central defensive midfielder.

At the same time, he will also be able to contribute to the team’s attack with his dazzling passing skills during quick counters. Overall, it seems that, Lluis Sastre is going to be a delight watch in the Hero ISL this season and might be able to change the team’s fortune with regard to their pathetic performance in their debut season.

Kevin De Bruyne : City’s Midfield General wins PFA player of the Year award

Kevin De Bruyne was City’s Silver lining to their good-bad 2019-20 campaign.

Manchester City lost to the Reds of England, Liverpool for the prestigious Premier League title for the 2019-20 season.

The Drongen born play maker was an unstoppable force in the English Top flight. Kevin De Bruyne became the first Man City player to win the accolade. Which comes as a massive surprise considering City have won four Premier League titles in the past nine years.

Kevin De Bruyne won the Premier League Player of the Year award.
Kevin De Bruyne won the Premier League Player of the Year award

Voted for by his fellow professionals, the prestigious award recognised De Bruyne’s sustained excellence last season. Which also saw him named in the PFA’s Team of the Year for the second time. The Sky Blues of England failed to get their hands on the league title to make it a hat-trick after winning the 2017-18 and 2018-19 seasons. Still De Bruyne looked in a red hot form as his top notch performances got everyone talking.

Kevin De Bruyne the leader of City's midfield

He was named the Premier League player of the season. As he got himself on level terms with French Legend Thierry Henry’s record of 20 assists in a single season. De Bruyne also pitched in with 13 league goals from midfield. This indicates the influence the 29-year-old had on the division despite City falling short.

Kevin De Bruyne celebrates after scoring a goal

This performance to be the best individual campaign of his City career. The 29-year-old was directly involved in more goals compared to any other player in the Premier League.

The Belgian Playmaker also made it to a Liverpool Stars studded PFA team of the year. It included Trent Alexander-Arnold, Virgil van Dijk, Andrew Robertson, Skipper Jordan Henderson and Senagalese icon Sadio Mane.

England and Denmark : Magnificent defensive display ends in a draw

ENGLAND FACED DENMARK, THE MATCH WAS EXPECTED TO BE A HIGH SCORING CONTEST. BUT AN EXCELLENT AND DISCIPLINED DEFENSIVE DISPLAY BY BOTH TEAMS. AIDED BY THE LACK OF FINESSE IN FRONT OF THE GOAL. THUS IT RESULTED IN THE MATCH ENDING 0-0 FORCING BOTH THE TEAMS TO SHARE POINTS.

As the Danish hosted the English in the capital city of Copenhagen on the 8th of september. The match was expected to be a high scoring game. As both the teams had a pretty experienced attack with the likes of Eriksen, Braithwaite and Dolberg in front of the goal for Denmark. For England it was Kane, Sterling and Sancho.

England and Denmark
Three Danish players try to gain control of the ball from English player

Prior to the game England had a few setbacks as Foden and Greenwood were not available for breaking the COVID – 19 guidelines. Kyle walker was also suspended for this match . Thus Southgate had no other option but to play with an experimental formation of 3-4-3.

England also gave debut to 4 players during their game against Denmark. These included Conor Coady , Maitland Miles , Jack Grealish and Kalvin Phillips. During the game, England weren’t creative and were not able to produce too many chances. Even after the attack had some bright and experienced players.

England

England in this match had a back 3, which was something very new for the players as well as for the coach, usually they would have played with a back four. England’s defensive display was also were unstable. As the Danish front 3 were at times easily able to penetrate and exploit the defence.

England Skipper Harry kane
England Captain Harry Kane

The Danish defence in this game was rock solid, they hardly made a mistake. They ensured that the English back 3 didn’t get too many chances on goal. However, in the 93rd minute the best chance of the game came for England after some miscommunication between Schmeichel and the Danish defence occurred. Harry Kane tried to make the most out of the opportunity and went past Schmeichel and took a shot on the empty net only for Mathius to make an outstanding goal line clearance.

Grealish tries to go past Danish defenders during their match at Copenhagen.

Denmark had some incredible chances to score but weren’t able to capitalise on any occasion. Which was very disappointing from their point of view as the could have easily scored and won the game

Now with the first 2 match-days concluded in the nations league, tension is building up. Upon both teams as Belgium are sitting at the top of the group table after winning their first 2 games. Denmark need to find the quality in front of the goal back again. England need to come up with some productivity and positive ambition, if they want to finish at the top of the table and qualify for the playoffs.

James Rodriguez : All set for new challenges as he signs for Everton from Real Madrid

Colombian Attacking midfielder, James Rodriguez joins EPL side, Everton from Real Madrid.

James Rodriguez
All smiles for James Rodriguez as he signed for Everton

The news of him joining the PL side was kind of a ‘potential shock’ to the fans of the the Colombian playmaker. A player who started his career at FC Porto and eventually moved on to La Liga giants, Real Madrid C.F. where he flourished and undoubtedly reached the peak of his career.

James Rodriguez in action during Real Madrid

In 2014, his goal in FIFA World Cup, got him a FIFA Puskas Award. Later in 2017, he joined FC Bayern München on loan for two years there also, he won many hearts. But now, joining a club like Everton might not benefit him for his future.

A team with a struggling nature and bearing a fear of getting relegated shouldn’t have been the place for the Colombian to land upon. A player with such potential and with a glorified past must have gone for a top-drawer team. But at the same time, Everton fans are seeing new hopes as they think that James is the player who could bring a change in the club’s history.

James Rodriguez during his loan spell at Bayern Munich

It seems that James has taken up a challenge to give the expectations of Everton a new height. Now, time will play the judge’s role to identify whether James a is the fairytale writer for Everton or he had just destroyed his career at a mere age of 29!

Sumit Nagal : When the Tennis Court is Smitten with the Brilliance of an Indian

Sumit Nagal became the first Indian in the US open to win a Grand Slam main draw match in the last seven years, but the second round saw him collapse by 6-3, 6-3,6-2 against the magnanimous World No 2 Dominic Thiem.

Sumit Nagal
Sumit Nagal in action in the US Open

The glorious moment became a gif and was widely circulated in social media. Nagal caught a glimpse of the tennis wizard’s secrets but still he has miles to go before he could unravel everything. Arthur Ashe stadium is the testimony of his main draw debut last year against maestro of tennis Roger Federer.

Nagal smashes the return to his opponent during his US Open match

He had won the opening set before losing into 4. Nevertheless the Swiss was overawed by Sumit Nagal’s strikes. Thiem claimed to have seen Sumit Nagal’s match videos to inculcate his skills for the match. Throwing light on this majestic match Thiem says he had to keep up his pace to see through Nagal’s forehand as Nagal is a very swift player.

Nagal with his Herculean forehand puts the ball back in court and ceases only after securing points. But chivalry with Thiem proved to be challenging as the man on the other side of the court is esteemed to be the hardest worker off court, and a resilient hitter on it. Nagal admits Thiem is one step ahead of him. “Bravo”, as Thiem remarked at the end of the match, overwhelmed by the brilliant performance of the Indian tennis player.

It’s not that often that we see an Indian player competing in the of US Open finales against World No 2, but with his profound skills in handling the racket, he broke all the barriers. We are so proud of him.

UEFA Nations League : Wonderkids set a new Benchmark as Spain Defeat Ukraine 4-0

International Football is back into play after a long hold due to the Coronavirus Pandemic in the form of the UEFA Nations league. The Matchday 2 of the European Championship saw some of the brilliant performances by the youngsters.

UEFA Nations League
Ansu Fati during the match of Spain vs Ukraine

Barcelona’s Ansu Fati has become Spain’s youngest ever goalscorer at 17 years and 311 days old. The Barcelona starlet scored his debut goal in a 4-0 Nations League win over Ukraine on Sunday when he added the 2nd for his team.

Spanish Footballers celebrate their goal vs Ukraine

The Spanish Wonderkid won a penalty in the opening 3 minutes and Skipper Sergio Ramos made no mistake in converting in from the spot. Barcelona’s No. 31 fired an unstoppable screamer past the goalkeeper in the 32nd minute, thanks to a brilliant pass from Sergio Reguilon.

Ansu Fati broke 95 year old record.

The Spaniard could have scored his debut goal against the Germans a few days back when he headed past Trapp in the Matchday 1 but the goal was ruled out due to a foul by Sergio Ramos. But, Nevertheless Ansu found his first goal while donning the colours of his Country in his 2nd Cap.

The 2019-20 season was a season to forget for the Catalans but it was a one to remember for the 17 year old individually. He became the youngest goalscorer in the Champions League for FC Barcelona and he got everyone talking due to his heroics up front.

Ramos completed his brace when he netted the 3rd goal of the night for Luis Enrique’s Men and wrote his name in the record book as he became the highest goal scoring defender and also the 8th highest joint goal scorer for Spain. Super Sub and City’s latest recruit Ferran Torres added a fourth in the form of his debut goal in fine fashion as he volleyed home from inside the area after Serhiy Kryvtsov’s headed clearance fell kindly for him.

Ramos after scoring the penalty vs Ukraine in UEFA Nations League

Manchester City defender Eric García and Real Madrid defender Sergio Reguilón also made their debut for Spain in the UEFA Nations League.

Baljit Singh Rihal : The Man Behind Inventive Sports

Football today is the world’s biggest sport in terms of money and fan following. Behind every successful footballer in the modern game you can be sure that his agent is calling the shots and he’s the one who carries out the work behind the scenes at all levels of the game.

We recently reached out to Mr. Baljit Singh Rihal, Founder and CEO Inventive Sports, a sport company. He’s regarded as one of the Best in India due to hard work he puts for his clients. In an Exclusive chat with SportsKindle Media, he gave us overview about his job.

Q. When did you plan to start Inventive Sports?

Mr. Rihal : Inventive Sports started in 2010. We began as a grassroots initiative working with Chelsea FC and local clubs to attract young Asian players into football. We then developed the Asian Football Awards in 2012 with an aim to showcase Asians in the football industry.

Along our journey we also began the Asian Cricket Awards. As our sports network grew we moulded into an international sports consultancy, advising companies across the globe about conducting business in Indian sports. We have also forged a strong reputation as a major representation agency in India for both international and Indian football players and coaches.

Q. Please share your feelings about ISL and how is it changing the face of Indian Football globally?

Mr. Rihal : The ISL has elevated Indian Football outside of India due to the excellent media coverage and due to the appetite of audiences globally wanting to experience new football markets. The professionalism of the league has attracted sponsors and in turn has meant the whole ecosystem of football in India is evolving positively.

Baljit Singh Rihal
Baljit Singh Rihal with Steve Coppell

Q. Take us through the process of signing of players and coaches.

Mr. Rihal : It’s really a case of knowing the clubs requirements. So we communicate with clubs and ask what they are looking for. We then put forward suitable candidates using our global partner network. When the club shows interest, we then discuss and negotiate contract. If all boxes are ticked at that point, we have a signing.

German Sensation Kai Havertz joins Chelsea from Bayer 04 Leverkusen

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Chelsea completes their sixth successful transfer before the beginning of the campaign thus, continuing their fairy-tale transfer window. And guess who it is? Its none other than the German sensation Kai Havertz!

The youth icon of German football makes a move from the Bundesliga side, Bayer 04 Leverkrusen to the EPL giants, Chelsea FC.

Kai Havertz joins Chelsea
Leverkusen, Germany 17.08.2019, 1. Bundesliga, 1. Spieltag, Bayer 04 Leverkusen – SC Paderborn 07, Tor zum 2:1, Torschuetze Kai Havertz (B04) jubelt ( Defodi-01061007567 *** Leverkusen, Germany 17 08 2019, 1 Bundesliga, 1 Matchday, Bayer 04 Leverkusen SC Paderborn 07, Goal to 2 1, Scorer Kai Havertz B04 cheers Defodi 01061007567 Defodi-061 DFL REGULATIONS PROHIBIT ANY USE OF PHOTOGRAPHS AS IMAGE SEQUENCES AND/OR QUASI-VIDEO.

Former club legend, Frank Lampard who has taken the charge of the club last season, has taken this transfer window to a whole new level of the club. Last season, Chelsea had undergone the transfer ban and it seems like that they are actually taking a revenge this season.

The fairytale had started since their first transfer of the season was announced in the form of Timo Werner from RB Leipzig. But now, another youth talent of Deutschland has been added to their squad.

As per reports, Chelsea has a target of total 8 transfers out of which, 6 have already been done. Let’s see, who will be the last two players who will be added to Frank Lampard’s Chelsea’s 2020-21 season campaign’s squad.

Messi stays at Barcelona as the Transfer Saga ends

The Best Player on the Planet has decided his future and Barcelona remains to be the first priority despite being linked to moves away to Manchester City.

Lionel Messi has made a dramatic U-turn and will now don the colours of Blaugrana for the 2020-21 season, which is the last year in his contract.

Barcelona

The Barcelona captain stunned the world in August when he announced he wanted to leave the Camp Nou this summer after a trophyless season for the Laliga giants.
After 2 weeks of Chaos all aroung the Footballing circuit, Messi annouced his desire to continue for the Catalans.

Messi had believed he could quit the Nou Camp on a free thanks to a recission clause but Barca, backed by La Liga, argued that it has expired and that any club in the world would have to pay £623million (€700m) to activate his release clause and sign him.

“When I communicated my wish to leave to my wife and children, it was a brutal drama,” Messi told Goal.com in an exclusive interview.
“The whole family began crying, my children did not want to leave Barcelona, nor did they want to change schools.

There was only one way out if Messi was to leave: taking Barcelona to court. But the six-time Ballon d’Or winner refuses to take that route, and so will remain at the club for another 10 months.

“There was another way and it was to go to trial,” he added. “I would never go to court against Barca because it is the club that I love, which gave me everything since I arrived. It is the club of my life, I have made my life here. Barca gave me everything and I gave it everything. I know that it never crossed my mind to take Barca to court.”

Yet voicing his grievances with Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu, the 33-year-old said, “I told the club, including the president, that I wanted to go. I’ve been telling him that all year. I believed it was time to step aside.”

“It did not come because of the Champions League result against Bayern, no – I had been thinking about the decision for a long time.”

“I told the president and, well, the president always said that at the end of the season I could decide if I wanted to go or if I wanted to stay and in the end he did not keep his word.”

Despite his unhappiness, Messi insists he will give his all for Barcelona under new coach Ronald Koeman.

“My attitude is not going to change, no matter how much I have wanted to go. I will do my best. I always want to win, I am competitive and I don’t like to lose ever.”

The Six time Ballon d’Or winner broke his silence and has decided to dedicate his future to Barcelona and this came in as an huge relief for the Barcelona fans but as an heartbreak for Manchester City fans.

Cricket Special : Memorable Indian Coaches of the last two decades

Commemorating the exceptional coaches of Indian National Cricket Team.

On the event of teacher’s day we celebrate the contributions and labours of our mentors , teachers ; our way to pay respect to them and their efforts.The Indian Cricket team has seen number
of remarkable coaches who have paved a path of glory for the team through their consistent guidance. We approbate their tedious toil and thus articulate this disquisition on four head coaches of the Indian National Cricket team who have won accolades for their presiding term.



Ravishankar Shastri



The current head coach of the Indian National Cricket team had a remarkable career of his own. The all rounder batsman and former
commentator joined office back in 2017 .

As a coach and mentor to the team he has guided it towards glory and triumph, probably the main reason why he had the privilege of
coaching India three times in a row.

As Kohli once spoke in an interview about Shastri “I started being more fearless, not in situations which sort of seemed easy, like in white ball cricket, you invariably knew what the situation was. You prepared yourself, you get motivated very easily. But Test cricket, when it gets tough, to maintain your composure is the most difficult thing for a cricketer. That is something I really needed to correct” referring to the valuable advices he had been given by Ravi Shastri after the 2014 England tour, supposedly the leanest patch of his career.


Anil Kumble



The man hilariously nicknamed as “Jumbo” himself has a reputation of taking 619 wickets in his exceptional career ,has played tests and ODIs for 18 years and has successfully coachef
the team from 2016 to 2017.

Kumble’s first series as a coach was against the West Indies in July where India played four test matches, where India emerged victorious

After a defeat in ICC Champions Trophy Final 2017 against Pakistan, he stepped down as the head coach of the Indian
Cricket Team on 20 June 2017 after a duration of less than 1 year.

Despite the short spanning career as a coach there were considerable wins that added to India’s reputation and his
experience as a veteran cricketer helped him with it .

Gary Kirsten


Kirsten was the head coach from 2008 to 2011.The South African Cricketer had a successful career of his own ,over the
years he had gained a reputation as a sturdy batsman in both Test cricket and One Day cricket

Under his tenure India won the 2011 cricket world cup defeating Sri Lanka by 6 wickets and 10 balls to spare.

Kirsten has been praised on numerous occasions for enhancing the team’s playing techniques and a has been known to be a great motivator. In 2010, before India’s tour of South Africa, the erstwhile
captain M.S Dhoni described him as “The best thing to happen to Indian cricket”.



John Wright

Indian Coaches

The acclaimed international cricketer had coached the team from the year 2000 to 2005. Wright an outstanding batsman in his
own right, enjoyed a fruitful coaching career with India.

It was in his reign that the team improved immensely, winning home test series against Australia or be it winning a test series against Pakistan and making it to the 2003 Cricket World Cup Finals.

My first overseas coach and favourite coach so far. We had a great WC and he was responsible because there was some strong headed players in that side. As we grew together, we got better friend and he was more of a friend than a coach. He understood the team,” That is what the current BCCI president and former cricketer Sourav Ganguly had to say about him .

Floyd Pinto: The prodigy of preparing youth talents in Indian football

The man who turned the dreams of Indian Arrows to reality, the Indian prodigy of preparing youth talents in football ft. Floyd Pinto.



It was an honour for the whole team of SportsKindle to interview such an iconic personality like Floyd Pinto and all thanks to our very own, Pramit Mishra who made this happen. Here we present his exclusive journey in coaching through his words.



Q. You were an IT Engineer by profession but later, you changed your profession to the field of coaching. So, how did this happen?

Floyd Pinto : I have always been a sports enthusiast since my childhood days. I had a keen interest in all sorts of sports during those days. I have even played and represented my school, college and engineering college as well. But to be honest, I belong from an Indian middle class family and so, it was quite difficult for me to pursue a professional career in the field of sports.

So, it all started when I passed out of St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai and got into Don Bosco Engineering college. At that time, our college had a one of the best teams in football. We had players training at club like Mahindra and football was that one sport, which fascinated me the most.

This was how I got into here. Infact, I was a big fan of English Premier League and as we all know, the head coach there is called the manager and it got stuck into my mind that, “Yes, I want to be a manager of a professional football team”. So, I started doing research on it and Father Adolf of Don Bosco was the one who encouraged me to urge forward.

In the mean time, I got in contact with five universities of UK where I applied for a course in Sports Management but I didn’t go there since, it would have forced me into the management section rather than the coaching profession.

Then, I started searching for courses to acquire a professional coaching license. But, I got into a job at ICICI and signed a 15th months-contract with them. During that contract period, fortunately, once again with the help of Father Adolf, I got appointed as a part-time coach at the Kenkre Football Club in Mumbai which used to train at the Shivaji Park.

This was how I got my first break, and with each passing day, I developed the confidence that this was the place where I wanted to be. After my 15th months-contract got over, I joined Kenkre football club as their full-time coach this was where, my professional journey started.

I had a talk with the CEO of the club, Mr. Joshua and at that time, got a strong desire to go to UK and get my professional coaching license. So, I went to UK for the first time and got my FA Level I and FA Level II which was equivalent to a C License in India. But during those day, it wasn’t easy to equate a FA to AFC License.

I returned to India and joined a C License course which was going on in Mumbai at that time. It was the year 2011, when I got my first AFC License. There was no opportunity in India for a B License at that time. I decided to do a FA International License which was a fast track for Non-UK coaches to receive a license that was equivalent to UEFA B License.

This course opened my eyes to a new perspective of coaching, totally different from the one, I was accustomed with. After coming back to India, I got to know that there was a B License course going in Mizoram. I immediately went there as it was very important for my coaching career.

Royal Challengers Bangalore have the most fragile middle order?

The most powerful team on paper and is very enegetic that is Royal Challengers Bangalore. But is it true? We will find out soon.

When we talk about the strength of the team the 2 names that comes to our mind is Captain Virat Kohli and Mr.360 AB de Villiers, when they come to the field then it becomes the core strength of the team and when they play brutally it becomes very difficult to divert their attention .

Royal Challengers Bangalore
Royal Challengers Bangalore skipper Virat Kohli

They both have the capability to win matches individually on their very own each day. One of the spicy thing in RCB is one of the team who can boast 8 All rounders in their side . Not just they are good in the all rounder section but they have good talent with a mix of good batting and bowling all rounders .

There are well balanced bowlers like Umesh Yadav, Dale Steyn and Washington Sundar are one of most powerplay bowlers. Navdeep Saini , Chris Morris and Kane Richardson are superb bowlers

Now we will list few weakness of the team.

The issue started in Indian Premier League 2019 edition where RCB needed a middle order finisher badly as an extended arm to Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers at number 5. But they literally hired no specialist for that role .They did procure the services of Aaron Finch and Joshua Philippe this time around.

Moreover there are no backups in the batting department that can cover up for the fragile middle order .

In the end we would like to conclude that Royal Challengers Bangalore does have a batting squad with minor gap to be filled in the batting department. However it’s going to be their bowling that would be be the key role or motive . They surely need a death over specialist like other Indian Premier League teams have. We hope for the best for Royal Challengers Bangalore this year.

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Odisha FC signs Diego Maurício Machado de Brito for Indian Super League 2020-21

Odisha FC mark their 1st Foundation day today and what can be a better gift to their fans than a new signing? With a new coach on board Odisha FC have already began their preparations for the upcoming season.

The Odisha based Football Club has landed their Brazilian target man Diego Maurício Machado de Brito for the upcoming season of Indian Super League.

Diego Maurício Machado de Brito

He is a player with good physical presence and skill, many fans compare Diego Maurício to Didier Drogba, calling him Drogbinha, which means the Little Drogba.

Diego Maurício came up from the ranks of Brazilian Outfit Flamengo and has represented their senior side for 3 years and then moved to Russian outfit Alania Vladikavkaz but came back to Brazil for a Loan spell with 2nd Division club Sport Recife. The following year he signed for Portuguese Top tier club Vitória Setúbal.

Then he was bought by Brazilian Club Bragantino and was loaned out to Saudi Professional League Club Al-Qadisiyah FC for the 2015-16 season. His second loan spell saw him donning the colours of SJZ Ever Bright in the Chinese Super League and his final and third loan spell was with K League 1 club Gangwon FC for 2 seasons, netting 20 goals in 72 appearances.

Diego Mauricio

The 29 year old recently featured for Busan IPark and CSA in the 2018-19 and 2019-20 season respectively.

Welcoming Diego Maurício at OFC, Head Coach Mr. Stuart Baxter said, “We are delighted to secure the services of Diego. He is a player who can both combine with his teammates and also create chances on his own. When he gets to know the squad he will be a major asset for us.”

After signing for Odisha FC, the striker expressed, “I am very excited to have joined Odisha FC and I look forward to work with Coach Stuart Baxter. I have heard and read a lot of interesting things about the young Indian players at Odisha FC, the Juggernauts and India as a country. This project excites me a lot and I am coming with the aim to win the league.”

The 2020-21 season is all set to be played behind closed doors in Goa and The Juggernauts can hope for an extra ordinary season with Stuart Baxter and Co. at helm.

It’s Fearless Pana time, Feat. Panagiotis Triadis

Dynamic with the ball and boasting a neat first-touch, he is also known for his prowess in the middle of the park and scoring long range screamers is his cup of tea. Our Next guest on ‘Stars Talk’ is German-Greek linchpin Panagiotis Triadis.

The Greek winger is a fearless and skilful dribbler. “In my head, even if Sergio Ramos was in front of me, I am going to go on and dribble him,” said the pacy forward.
And here’s how Panagiotis Triadis dribbled through our questions.

Q. What is it that drives you to get up ,stay fit and train ?
Pana : I Started training hard and being fit from a very young age. My dad played a huge role and always pushed me to the limit.

Q. According to you which was the most competitive match of your career? What were the challenging factors?
Pana : Europa League Game vs Standard Liege. I had a great assist to de Guzman a good friend of mine. It’s every footballers dream to play in of course the Champions League or Europa League.

Panagiotis Triadis

Q. We know you’ve played for Greece national under 19 team ,could you tell us how that was instrumental to your career?
(Continuing) How did you happen to pursue football as your career?
Pana : I love football. It plays a huge roll in my life so I’m just very lucky and blessed to turn my hobby into my job. And of course playing for the U-National teams both for Germany and Greece, is a privilege.

Saurabh Bhanwala : The Aspiring Talent of Indian Football

Saurabh Bhanwala , the 20 years old defender and a budding footballer currently plays for Punjab FC.To say the least his skills have impressed the audience. Luckily we’ve had the opportunity to have a little interview with him , here are some snippets of it.



Q.To be so young yet doing so well in your career, how has the journey been so far?

Saurabh : The journey had been a rollercoaster ride with many ups and downs , yet I enjoyed it so much as this is what I love to do , I love this profession . I started playing football in Delhi and being from a sports background my dad always inspired me to give all in sports. Then during my high school I was selected in Delhi Dynamos FC (U-18) and training under many professional coaches and staffs changed my whole mindset , that was the time I decided I had to play professionally anyhow.



Q.How exactly would you describe your experience of playing for Punjab FC?

Saurabh : It feels very motivated to play for Punjab FC ,the management and coach here Curtis Fleming (one of the renowned player in premier league) are very professional .After leaving minerva punjab fc last year I joined Punjab FC and participated in 2nd div which had been a great experience to play under one of the greatest coach who was a defender himself and sharing his experience with us . I’m very positive and looking forward for playing this season with Punjab FC in upcoming I league.



Q.Who has been your toughest contender/opponent so
far?



Saurabh : The best player whom I have ever played with is Phillip Njoku. I played with him in Minerva Punjab FC, he was a player with a great fighting spirit and a good character, he always motivates the team to perform better .

Another milestone in James Anderson’s career

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James Anderson aces yet another test match , storms into the 600 wicket club .

James Anderson, the 38 years old English cricket player
famed as one of world’s finest swing bowlers adds yet
another feather in his cap. On Tuesday , August 25 , James Anderson became the first fast bowler to take 600 test wickets.

On this eventful day , Anderson showed the Pakistani
Captain Azhar Ali the door ,it was the fifth and final test
between the two teams ,that was being held at
Southampton. He took a five wicket haul during
Pakistan’s first innings, in the second innings he
dismissed Abid Ali and Azhar . Only very few cricketers
such as Muttiah Muralitharan ,Shane Warne and Anil
Kumble have broken the 600 wicket barrier in the past.



The right arm pace bowler arrived to the international
cricket scene only in 2003. He has played more than 150
test matches and approximately 200 one day internationals.

It was the 2003 World Cup where he established himself as a promising cricketer. He played against Pakistan and collected four wickets in a day. This was just the start of his remarkable career ,that would only skyrocket in the future.

In the same year he made his presence known in the world of cricket with his outstanding perfomance in the Test Cricket Match against Zimbabwe .He went on to take five wickets in an innings. Despite certain lows in his career he had made it a point to take it uphill again.



There is absolutely no doubt about his prowess and his
reputation on field but this achievement serves as a
testament to his rigorous work ethics that eventually
led him to make headway .

James Anderson



As cricket and sports enthusiasts we are thrilled by this
news ,as the dexterous player sets a new milestone!

FC Barcelona President Josep Maria Bartomeu plays his ultimate masterstroke to oust Messi

As days are passing by, the Lionel Messi Transfer Saga is just getting better and better. After, FC Barcelona was thrashed by UEFA Champions League champions, FC Bayern München in the Quarter-Final and the 10-goal thriller was recorded as their worst exit ever from any tournament.

Almost after a fortnight, Barça and Argentine legend, Lionel Messi sent the now-famous burofax to the club authority stating his strong will to leave the club. FC Barcelona is the only club, Leo has represented in his senior career. Though being threatened to get banned from football by FIFA for leaving the club against the club’s will, La Pulga is still determined to leave the club and Manchester City looks to be the favourites to land the Argentine veteran at Etihad.

As per reports, Messi had said earlier that, if FC Barcelona President, Josep Maria Bartomeu doesn’t resign then he is not going to stay in Catalonia.

Though later, reports claimed that, Leo had made an irrevocable statement that, no matter if Barça President resigns or not, he is not going to wear the jersey again for the Catalan Giants.

In the meantime, Bartomeu spices up the ‘most-celerated’ transfer saga ever with his masterstroke. As per the Spanish Media, Bartomeu is willing to resign if Messi publicly says that the problem is the president and that he wants to stay at Barça without Bartomeu.

And this would clearly mean to the common masses that, if messi stays, it is cause he dictates over the club. He is the one who runs the club over his own will by selecting the players, managers and even the president!

Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona Captain)

On the other hand, if Messi leaves then, Bartomeu would claim that he did everything possible to convince him to stay even to an extent that he was completely ready to organise an Associate press and declare his resignation.

Bartomeu

It seems like that, the Best player in the World is in the worst phase of his career and we hope that he will surely be able to overcome it and will provide us with some more unforgettable memories for whichever team he plays, as we reach the end of his glorious career.

[Video] Odisha FC’s Mastermind Abhik Chatterjee

Everyone knows the players and the coaches but people hardly notice the hard work and determination the backroom Staff puts in for the team.


Next up we have someone who is a major reason behind Odisha’s impressive Transfer window run. Odisha FC has got everyone talking with their Transfer Market moves. Our host Pramit Misra
reached out to Mr. Abhik Chatterjee , Head of Football Operations Odisha FC to know how things work out behind the scenes and to bring his and his team’s work under spot light
.

https://www.facebook.com/SportsKindle/videos/740004109877204/

We would like to extend a Big Thank You to Mr. Abhik Chatterjee for getting in touch with us and also for letting us know more about his job. We wish you and Odisha FC all the very best for your future endeavours.

Indian Premier League 2020 : Watch out for Chennai

Indian Cricket Fans are waiting eagerly for the Indian Premier League to start and they can’t stop searching the web about news regarding their favourite players.

Today we will talk about Chennai Super Kings one the mighty and powerful team in the Indian Premier League. But this year it will be held in UAE and thus the surface will different and so will be their approach this time.

The Chennai Super Kings are a franchise cricket team based in Chennai , Tamil Nadu which plays in the Indian Premier League since it’s foundation in 2008.They play their home matches at M.A Chidambaram Stadium. They hold the records of most number of appearances in the playoffs. MS Dhoni has captained the side which has won three Indian Premier League titles.

Indian Premier League

There are many strength and weakness of the team .The combination of Indian Premier League’s leading run getter Suresh Raina and MS Dhoni are the most valuable player just like Royal Challengers Bangalore has like Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers.

Chennai Super Kings skipper MS Dhoni

Chennai Super Kings had two new openers last year and both performed extremely well .The duo of Shane Watson and Ambati Rayudu will be expected again this year. Shane Watson and Dwayne Bravo , Ravindra Jadeja and Kedar Jadhav provide for superb batting and bowling options . Mitchell Santher David Willey and Chaitanya Bishnoi provides with good backups for the side.

This side has one of the strongest batting prowess along side all rounder ability to their name. Chennai Super kings has the like of Imran Tahir as their lead spinner . Overall conclusion there is one side which we can say that CSK can win this year’s Indian Premier League title . The only weakness they have but haven’t faced brutally is their players age factor are not on their side and any type of injury will take some time to recover but the likes of Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Suresh Raina who promise great fitness along with the ever flexible Dwayne Bravo.

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Lionel Messi’s reunion with Pep could be a matter of just few days

The Lionel Messi transfer saga continues and it seems the best player on Earth is about to make a decision.

Barcelona’s harrowing Champions League exit against Bayern Munich fuelled the start of this summer’s most dramatic transfer story. Lionel Messi, amid concerns regarding the direction in which Barcelona are heading, is said to have made the decision that he wants to leave the only club he has represented in his senior career to date.

As we head towards day four of the ongoing reports surrounding the most high-profile potential transfer in recent memory, the Lionel Messi transfer reports are speeding up.

Few sides in world football could afford to finance a move for the six-time Ballon d’Or winner, with it likely that a big-money transfer fee and eye-watering salary would be required in order to get a deal over the line.
The Etihad Stadium is being mooted as a possible landing spot for the Argentina Great who is mulling over his options at Camp Nou.

Manchester City are ready to offer £89.5m plus Bernardo Silva, Gabriel Jesus and Eric Garcia in a sensational player-plus cash deal to land Barcelona and Argentina’s No. 10.

Lionel Messi

City are optimistic of reaching a deal with the Catalan giants after Lionel Messi announced his desire to leave the club this summer. With two of Barca’s transfer targets added to the deal, City’s chances of closing a deal have rocketed. City are desperate to become kings of Europe and Messi is seen as the signing which may finally make that possible.

The presence of tactician Pep Guardiola at the hot seat of the Etihad Stadium comes in as an blessing for the sky blues of England. Guardiola wants Messi, and Messi wants Guardiola. They both want to go on and win a Champions League. Messi has had plenty of those, of course, but wants to win yet another. That’s his priority. But, Manchester City want to win their first. Can we see the Magician donning the Sky blue colour next season?

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Jamie Vardy Awarded With New Leicester City Contract

Leicester City will keep Jamie Vardy at the club ahead of his 36th birthday. He has won the Golden Boot for the first time in his career in the Premier League 2019-2020 season.

As remuneration Leicester City wanted to reward Jamie Vardy by a new contract which contains a pay rise and one year’s extension to his current contract which otherwise would have been expired in two years time. Charging past Pierre Emerick Aubameyang, Raheem Sterling and Danny Ings he scored 23 Premier League goals paving path for Leicester City to the crown.

Vardy joined Leicester City on 17 May, 2012 for a reported fee of 1 million. He signed a three year contract untill June 2015.Vardy made his debut for Leicester on 14th August against Torquay United in the first round of the League Cup dominating the match at Plainmoor.

Jamie Vardy

He headed the final goal leading to 4-0 win. Bext debut he made was in King Power stadium winning 2-0 against Peterborough United where he hurled the ball for Andy King. He scored his first league goal where they were defeated by Blackburn Rovers 2-1 on 25th August.

He made a comeback in September where Leicester scored two 2-1 in a clash with Burnley and Middlesbrough. He faced criticism from Leicester City supporters in social media during his First Season for the club.

He even thought of giving up football but manager manager Nigel Pearson and assistant manager Craig Shakespeare convinced him to continue playing with the club which led to series of victories thereafter. Leicester City would not have been concrete without Vardy.

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Bartholomew Ogbeche is all set to join Mumbai City FC this season

The Nigerian forward Bartholomew Ogbeche will be seen donning the Mumbai City FC jersey in the upcoming season of Hero Indian Super League.

He bid his last goodbye to his former teammates through a farewell message stating that he will not be a part of their team anymore and also wishes them luck for their future.

Ogbeche , an ex-PSG striker, who joined Indian Super League side, North East United FC in 2018-19 season, eventually shining for the highlanders. After a great season, he made a move to Kerala Blasters FC last year where he readily shined once again.

Bartholomew Ogbeche

He has scored 15 goals for the Kerala side which helped him to surpass Iain Hume as their all time top scorer and also was the leading contender of the Golden Boot. So, its quite clear, that the Mumbai City FC fans are surely expecting a high-octane performance from him in the upcoming season too!

The transfer market has been quite busy this month amid the pandemic but Mumbai City FC are on a roll after securing services from Lobera to Ogbeche. This Indian Super League season is going to be a cracker.

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The End of the Golden Generation of FC Barcelona in 2020? Messi Determined to leave Barcelona this summer!

The Best Player on the planet, Lionel Messi has conveyed his decision of not donning the Blaugrana colours in the future to the Boardroom of FC Barcelona.

FC Barcelona’s stance towards Messi has changed drastically since the 8-2 exit to Bayern Munich in the Champions League quarter-finals which led to the immediate sacking of former coach Quique Setién and the sporting director Eric Abidal. The Dutch man Ronald Koeman was immediately bought in to take over the hot seat at the Camp Nou.

End of Golden Generation of FC Barcelona and Lionel Messi

The Argentine star invoked a clause in his contract that would allow him to leave without a transfer fee before the end of his contract. Lionel Messi’s representatives believe he can make that decision unilaterally, thanks to a clause in his contract that enables him to leave free as long as he announces his intention to do so before the end of the season.

FC Barcelona is expected to contest, though, quite when the end of the season is. The club probably will argue that the clause expired at the end of June, when the Spanish and European campaigns were scheduled to finish but was put on hold due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. Messi’s side is reportedly convinced that the exceptional circumstances of a pandemic-delayed season rendered that timing irrelevant. It is his, and his representatives’, belief that he is able to activate the clause until the 31st of August, 2020.

Sending the burofax, in this interpretation, triggered that clause, that indicates Messi’s spell of nearly 2 decades is nearing an end. Messi joined FC Barcelona at the age of 13, recruited when an emissary from Barcelona, sent out to watch him play in his hometown, Rosario, Argentina, drew up a contract on a napkin.

His rise, in that time, has mirrored that of his club. Messi’s list of honors extends to 10 Spanish championships, four Champions League trophies and six world player of the year awards. His tally of individual records, if anything, is more remarkable.

He has scored the maximum goals, hattricks, doubles and even has provided the maximum number of assists in the Spanish Top flight. He is a 6 time ballon d’or winner, the award that is presented annually to the Best Player in the world.

Messi made his debut for the Catalans on 16 October, 2004 and since then he has been breaking records and has represented football’s golden standard. Messi has previously suggested that he would finally bid a Goodbye to Football at the Camp Nou but the unusual turn around of events are telling a different story.

The extraordinary development potentially puts the 33-year-old within reach of a dramatic move to Manchester City and a reunion with Pep Guardiola.

Manchester United, PSG, Inter Milan and Juventus are also showing early interest to land the Argentina Great.

Dhoni’s Retirement on Independence Day as ‘Mahi Bhai’ says goodbye to international cricket

Former captian of Indian cricket team Mahendra Singh Dhoni retired from international cricket. In the middle of the evening he announced his farewell in a great poetic way. 

Dhoni’s contribution in blue jersey will be remembered for a long time. From 2004 to 2020, the journey was unforgettable for his fans and well wishers. He won both T20 world cup, 50 over world cup alongwith the 2013 champions trophy. 

MS Dhoni

From field setting to helicopter shot his performance was truly enjoyable. 

 “Thanks a lot for your love and support throughout,” he said in his official Instagram handle.

A perfect humor mixed with great finishing methods. His teammates called him Mahi Bhai means big brother. It expressed that he always backed the newcomers with his experience and never stepped down to help the old ones.  From Lahore to Dhaka, Melbourne to Manchester his imprint was undoubtedly fascinating among his spectators.

The trust behind the stumps he delivered is something which is never to be forgotten. After his announcement reactions are pouring from across the globe.

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Will Atalanta be able to continue their fairytale against Paris Saint Germain?

Atalanta B.C., is on a roller-coaster ride as they have written a fairytale under their manager, Gian Piero Gasperini by finishing third in Serie A, this season.

With their Slovenian “fairytale writer”, Josip Iličić they are having a great season. But, as the Slovenian forward is out of play because of personal issues and is on the verge of retirement due to depression, it will be difficult to say, that whether Gasperini’s side would be able to continue their fairytale or not.

Atalanta Striker Josep Ilicic

Atalanta will be facing Ligue 1 Champions, Paris Saint-Germain in their UEFA Champions League Quarter Final tie and without their star player, only time will be able to say that whether Atalanta will be heading one-step forward towards their first ever UCL trophy or it will be an easy, clear win for the Ligue 1 Giants.

Amongst the contenders left in the UCL campaign only Bayern Munich and FC Barcelona have won the title and the rest have Zero UCL titles to their name as Juventus and Real Madrid crashed out of UCL after their loss to Lyon and City.

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Dragoș Firțulescu : The Chennaiyin fans favourite star

Speed is the Key in Football’ as they say and next up we have someone who’s fast, quick but somehow the 2 time Champions of the Indian Super League managed to get his signature.

We are talking about Chennaiyin FC’s No. 10 Dragoș Firțulescu. It was our pleasure to have you on board with us Sir. And here’s what he had to say about his career to our Interviewer Yash Pratap Singh and Suvrodeep Chakraborty.

Q. You’ve faced a lot of struggles in your life, so how did you overcome them and who has been your inspiration ?
Dragos : Yes, a lot ! True ! But in the end I believe that I was born a warrior not a person who cries for mercy ! My number 1 inspiration was karma and believing in God !!

Q. You’ve played in alot of clubs in different cities, so after joining Chennaiyin FC how did you feel?
Dragos : I was very happy because I was made a part of that family ! Hope for them to have a great season ! I felt very good in Chennaiyin because of the people , staff were so close like family members ! On this way I want to say thank you to our owner Vita Dani and Abishek because they never push us and always help us to be calm and to be relaxed ! People from staff I mean Arhiant , Shantanu , Doctor , Rajiv , Raju all of them were amazing and helped me !!!

Q. Which is your favorite position, Attacking midfielder or Left winger?
Dragos : My favourite position is right winger but in the end I just want to play , to enjoy , to get my chances !

Baba Ramdev’s Patanjali rises as New Sponsorship bid for IPL 2020 after Vivo exits

Due to the border tensions between India and China, BCCI cancels the title sponsor deal with Chinese Mobile Maker Vivo.

Currently BCCI is looking for a new title sponsor for their forthcoming IPL tournament. Lot of Indian companies have appeared in the bidding list but yet to take the final call.  Baba Ramdev’s Patanjali Ayurvedic considering bidding for upcoming IPL title sponsor.


One of the official of Patanjani named Sk Tijarawala said, “We are considering this, this is Vocal for Local and making a Indian brand as global, this is the right platform. We’re considering into that perspective”. 

After this development twitter predict some facetious reaction.

He also said that, BCCI showed some interest upon Patanjali and cleared that the proposal has to be submitted by August 14.

Patanjali


Patanjali Ayurvedic is a renowned association which provide FMCG products and vedic medicines. According to its data Patanjali’s annual turnover is about 10,500 crores. Right now the current scenario for Cricket is not in favour. However lot of speculation and rumours are spreading around the pitch.

Upcoming Indian Premier League is scheduled in the United Arab Emirates between September 19 to November 10. For spectators and Cricket lovers the wait is not over yet.

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Jadon Sancho Transfer Saga : Manchester United still hopeful to land the English Wonderkid

The Jadon Sancho saga continues and Monday was the key day regarding Sancho’s future, amidst links with United this summer.

Dortmund chief Michael Zorc insisted United have no chance of signing Sancho now after he landed in Switzerland with his team-mates for a pre-season training camp. However, the Red Devils still remain hopeful of landing the England international with the two clubs remaining at loggerheads over his £108million valuation.

Jadon Sancho

Speaking on Monday, Zorc said: ‘We plan with Jadon Sancho. He’ll play for us next season. The decision is final. I think that answers all of the questions.’


BVB’s no. 7 remains the most wanted man at the Old Trafford as Ole Solskjær is keen to add another attacking threat to Manchester United ranks.

Player wages and Agent fees are an concern for the Reds of Manchester as they do not want to repeat the same mistakes they have previously done in the Transfer Market.

The Red devils are optimistic to land the English Wonderkid before the 5th of October and if not then French International Kingsley Coman remains to be United’s fall back option if a deal for the English Winger is not agreed with Dortmund.

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Roger Federer : A Timeless Legend

When we speak of Roger Federer, perfection is the only reigning word.Well,he turned 39 on 8th August.

As we wish him our best wishes let’s delve more about Roger Federer , the unrivalled tennis player. Since his debut in 1998, he has indeed an exemplary player till date.With his elegant style and seamless serve he prospered with the magic of a single hand on the tennis ground. The most important thing is each and every serve is replete with grace.

Nevertheless, he is an artist who swerves the racket sophistically and each and every moment is spectacular. Even the ball humbly strikes on the racket for him. He overcame many hurdles with surgeries in the right knee. But he never failed to amaze us. 2020 is indeed a setback for every players. But we expect him to return on the ground in 2020.

Roger Federer is the only player who has played the maximum number of Grand Slam finals appearing in 31 and taking the trophies for 20. He initially indulged in badminton and basketball before solely concentrating on tennis. Federer used to be quite hot headed on the tennis ground but he went a drastic change after the death of his former coach Peter Carter.

He fortified his position among top 10 ATP rankings straight from October 2002 to November 2016. He clenched the ATP World No 1 ranking for 310 weeks of his career. Roger Federer is the first male player to seize the Grand Slam without dropping a single set against Fernando Gonzalez in 2007.

Roger Federer

He is matchless even in his poor form with knee injuries. He has won the maximum number of Laureus World Sportsman of year. Indeed a glorious man who only strives for perfection. Maestro, we salute you.

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Messi fuels Barcelona to the Final 8 of the UEFA Champions League for the 13th time in a row

A Lionel Messi driven Barcelona hammered the Gli Azzurri from Italy and secured a Quarterfinal Spot against Bayern Munich.

The Catalans had an unstable start and almost gave away an important goal when Dries Mertens clipped the woodwork inside two minutes but Ter Stegen had it covered at the first post. The La Liga giants then swiftly gained stability and control over the game gradually after Clement Lenglet headed the host ahead in the 10th minute and that came in from an outstanding corner delivered by Ivan Rakitic.

In an empty Camp Nou on a tranquil August evening the new normal was the old normal on 23 minutes when Messi stumbled skillfully past four Napoli defenders and shot past David Ospina and that doubled the lead for the former Champions of Spain.

Lionel Messi

It seemed as if the Blaugrana took a 3-0 lead against the Italians when Barcelona’s No. 10 found the back of the net again from a Frenkie De Jong cross but his effort was ruled out by VAR due to a handball.


Few Minutes later Quique Setién’s men were awarded a penalty when the Barcelona Skipper was fouled by Senegalese international Kalidou Koulibaly and Luis Suarez made no mistake in converting it from the spot.

2 minutes later Napoli were awarded a lifeline when Ivan Rakitic fouled Napoli’s target Man Dries Mertens in the 18 yard box. Napoli’s Captain Lorenzo Insigne scored a crucial goal from the spot but that wasn’t enough for them to make a comeback against Lionel Messi and Co.

Next Stop Lisbon as the Catalans face the Bavarians In the final 8 of the Champions League in what promises to be an absolute cracker.

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India retain hosting rights of ICC Men’s T20 World Cup in 2021, While Australia to host 2022

International Cricket Council confirmed that India will host 2021 T20 World Cup as scheduled. And Australia will conduct this year’s postponed edition in 2022.

Yesterday ICC held a significant session which included the future T20 World Cups and Women’s 50 over world cup. According to the global body this year’s world cup will be postponed till 2022 due to Covid-19 pandemic which was scheduled to be hosted by Australia. The break isn’t settled yet, where as India retain the hosting rights of 2021 T20 World Cup as planned. 

T20 World Cup

One of ICC Board Member cleared that, “BCCI were never keen to host the 2020 edition which would have meant that they had to host back to back ICC events including the 50 over world cup in 2023, which wasn’t a viable option”.

However the trouble amongst players are still flowing. Some officials feel that various countries facing multiple situations regarding coronavirus, the backbone of cash load are not set yet which gives a tough fight to organize any tournaments. 
Chief Executive of ICC Manu Shawhney said, “We now have absolute clarity on the future of ICC events enabling all of our members to focus on the rescheduling of lost internationals and domestic Cricket. We will now proceed as planned with the Men’s T20 World cup 2021 in India and 2020 edition in Australia”.

Talking about the women’s world cup he says, “There has been no women’s international cricket played since the conclusion of the ICC women’s T20 World cup earlier this year and due to the varying impact of Covid-19 globally that is likely to remain the situation for a number of teams. Moving the event by 12 months gives all competing teams the chance to play a sufficient level of Cricket ahead any tournament, it will maintain the integrity of that event”.

The ICC women’s Cricket World Cup is rescheduled for 2022. Final dates and Venues are not yet confirmed. For now the uncertainty of this game will continue until any decisions are being finalized. 


Nearby ICC events : 2021 T20 World Cup in India, 2022 T20 World Cup in Australia, 2023 50 Over World Cup in India. 


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Olympique Lyonnais switched off the Cristiano League

Lyon go past the Champions of Italy on away goals and booked a meeting with the Sky Blues of England Manchester City in the Quarterfinals of the Elite European Championship.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s brace in vain as Maurizio Sarri’s men are dumped OUT of the Champions League with Lyon’s No. 11 securing the deal for the Les Gones through an early 1st half penalty.

Lyon

The Portuguese Skipper converted one from the spot before the half time and scored a fabulous long range screamer at around the hour mark but that wasn’t enough to avoid elimination yet again for the Old lady.

Having lost the Away leg 1-0 in March before the Coronavirus Pandemic, Bianconeri were still optimistic on getting the job done and securing a 4th consecutive Quarterfinal appearance in the Champions League but Memphis Depay’s early spot kick gave Ronaldo and Co. gave another mountain to climb.

But, unfortunately things did not fall at place despite numerous attempts from Juve. Fan favourite and Serie A’s Most Valuable player for the 2019-20 season Paulo Dybala came in from the bench in the 2nd half as the last hope for the Italians but had to be substituted after 14 minutes of play due to a thigh injury and that came in as the added toppings for Lyon that saw them go past Juventus to the Quarterfinals of the Champions League.

Lyon will now face a High flying Manchester City in the Round of 8 at Lisbon, Portugal but this will need a demanding performance from the French side as Pep Guardiola and his men are confident on bringing the first European Title to the Etihad.

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Europa League Match Report: Manchester United qualifies for the Round of 8

On Wednesday night, Premier League giants, Manchester United qualifies for the UEFA Europa League’s Round of 8.

They secured a 2-1(7-1 on aggregate) victory over Austrian side, LASK. This was their win number eight against an Austrian side in UEFA competitions scoring 22 goals in all and conceding only one. From the first leg of R16, the Red Devils had a 5 goal advantage on aggregate which was further increased by Jesse Lingard and Anthony Martial in the second leg.

The last time Manchester United reached the quarter finals of the Europa League was when they won the tournament back in 2016-17, which was Jose Mourinho’s first season in charge of the Red Devils.

Manchester United

The expectations are gradually high from Solskjaer’s side this time and they are surely eyeing for a another UEFA Europa League title, this season.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – AUGUST 05: Anthony Martial of Manchester United celebrates scoring their second goal during the UEFA Europa League round of 16 second leg match between Manchester United and LASK at Old Trafford on August 05, 2020 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images)

The emerging star of the Red Devils, Mason Greenwood has scored more Europa League goals than any other Manchester United player this season, netting five of his eight shots on target, though he was unable to find the back of the net in the 2nd leg of Round of 16.

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Nerijus Valskis all set to re-unite with Owen Coyle for a different Indian Super League team

After signing the Man of Steel Owen Coyle as their new head coach, they are now all set for Nerijus Valskis as their key trump card for 2020-21 ISL season.

Jamshedpur FC are betting big for their upcoming season.

Jamshedpur FC all set to sign Owen Coyle


The 54 year old veteran Owen Coyle had a remarkable season with Chennai FC last year. He took the charge when machans were struggling at the bottom of the table and got them a berth into the play offs.

Former Bolton FC manager maintained a wealthy role in that season. However, Chennaiyin FC didn’t renew the contract as he is set to join Tata owned Jamshedpur FC.


According to a JFC officials, ” We have a huge fan following and good infustrucure in place. But our team has not been able to reach the play offs. We are hopeful that Coyle would make a turnaround in our fortunes in the tournament”.


On the other hand, Jamshedpur FC signed a two year contract with 33 year old Chennaiyin striker and Golden Boot winner Nerijus Valskis. The Lithuanian footballer has claimed very impressive numbers in the Indian Super League.

Nerijus Valskis

He scored 15 goals with 6 assist in 20 matches. The imprint he made in his former club lead by Owen Coyle was surely something that they will never forget. The fans from Southern India cherishes his performances.


The duo is still open for spectators as both of them are acquired by Jamshedpur FC for their upcoming Indian Super League season. 

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Kai Heerings : The Dutch Stalwart of North East United FC

The Next Guest with us on “Stars Talk” is former Northeast United FC centre back Kai Heerings.

Bred at Ajax and having 63 appearances in the Eredivisie under his belt. Heerings made a move straight from the Eredivisie to the Indian top flight for the 6th edition of the Hero Indian Super League. Here’s a summary of Kai Heerings and his footballing career through his words.

Q. What were your thoughts when you came to know that an offer has come from Northeast United FC?

Kai : I was really surprised when I came to know that a offer from Northeast United came but at the same time very excited.
For me it was a new adventure and a new experience.

Q. What made you choose Northeast United FC over Kerala Blasters? And how did you feel after signing for the Highlanders?

Kai : Northeast United was concrete and Kerala Blaster where just rumours.