Shot-stoppers who left their mark on Hero ISL 2016
Goalkeepers played their part in making Hero Indian Super League 2016 a tight season as attackers found it difficult to break down backlines and finish beyond the custodians between the sticks. This past season witnessed 145 goals from a total of 1174 shots, of which 337 were saved by the Hero ISL 2016’s glovemen. Here indiansuperleague.com rates the performance of the top five custodians from the third edition of India’s biggest footballing extravaganza.
Amrinder Singh (Mumbai City FC)
Amrinder came of age with Mumbai City FC after spending Hero ISL 2015 with Atlético de Kolkata. The 23-year-old joined the Mumbai ranks late due to AFC Cup participation but left his mark on the league by winning the Golden Glove award even though he made only six appearances for Alexandre Guimaraes’ men. He kept four clean sheets in his first four games before conceding thrice against his former side ATK in the first leg of their semi-final in Kolkata. In all, he had five clean sheets from six games and made eight saves besides conceding a goal every 180 minutes.
Sandip Nandy (Kerala Blasters FC)
The oldest goalkeeper in the league at 41 years of age, Nandy played his role in Kerala Blasters FC’s surge to the final in Kochi. He earned 10 appearances for the men in yellow over the course of the season, making 17 saves and keeping four clean sheets. Nandy conceded seven goals at an average of 124.6 minutes per goal and played a vital role in the Blasters’ penalty shootout win against Delhi Dynamos FC in their second leg semi-final clash by making a massive save to swing the game in favour of Kerala.
Subrata Paul (NorthEast United FC)
India’s Spiderman enjoyed another strong Hero ISL campaign as NorthEast United FC missed the semis spot in agonizing fashion. The 30-year-old was third in the leaderboard for saves (35) and kept four clean sheets from his 11 appearances for the Highlanders. He conceded nine times at an average of 107.1 minutes per goal with his best performance of the season coming during NorthEast’s first meeting with FC Goa. Paul produced a scintillating display against the Gaurs in Guwahati as he bagged the Swift-Moment-of-the-Match award for a fine save.
Antonio Doblas (Delhi Dynamos FC)
The experienced Spaniard was an assuring presence in goal for an attack-minded Delhi Dynamos team that failed to reach the final after a heart-breaking loss on penalties against Kerala in the second leg of their semi-final. Doblas pulled off a save for the Lions during the shootout, however, he was rendered powerless and could only watch in despair as all the penalty takers from his team failed to find the back of the net against the Blasters. The 36-year-old conceded 10 goals in his 12 appearances for the Dynamos at an average of 107.3 minutes per goal. He also kept four clean sheets and made 26 saves in his second season with the side from the capital city.
Debjit Majumder (Atlético de Kolkata)
Majumder played his role for Atlético de Kolkata during their penalty shootout win against Kerala Blasters in the final at Kochi. The Indian keeper produced a brilliant save in the final to deny Kerala’s Cedric Hengbart from the spot and set up Jewel Raja to convert the title winning penalty. However, his contribution was evident straight from the outset of the season as he consistently managed to pull off spectacular stops. The 28-year-old conceded 15 times in his 15 appearances for ATK at an average of 92 minutes per goal. He ended the season fourth in the leaderboard for saves (32) and kept three clean sheets for Kolkata. Majumder had also denied Florent Malouda from the spot in Delhi during the league stage before his shootout heroics against Kerala in the final.