From Florentin Pogba to Roy Krishna: A look at the foreign players of each Hero ISL team

Clubs have toiled hard when it came to signing foreign players in the transfer window who will play a decisive part during the season. The Hero Indian Super League (ISL) 2022-23 season will witness a bunch of new faces alongside familiar ones who have made a name for themselves after proving to be a vital cog in their respective teams.

The six foreign players in the squad bring forth a new dynamic and infuse different elements with their ample playing experience while also playing a part in the holistic development of young Indian players, on the field as well as off the field.

With fans thronging back to the stands after a gap of two years, they will be rooting for their new foreign players to put up an exciting show and guide their team to the top level. Over the years, the Hero ISL has witnessed a multitude of world-class foreign players who have won the hearts of millions of Indian fans, and as the new season comes calling, let us have a look at the foreign players of each Hero ISL team.

ATK Mohun Bagan

Foreign players: Florentin Pogba, Brendan Hamill, Dimitri Petratos, Joni Kauko, Carl McHugh, and Hugo Boumous.

With two additions in the defence and one in the attack, head coach Juan Ferrando hasn’t delved much in the transfer window and has kept faith in his old-timers. Having no like-to-like replacement for Roy Krishna in the attacking department, Petratos will be expected to fill up those boots and be the face of the Mariners attack.

Bengaluru FC

Foreign players: Aleksandar Jovanovic, Javier Hernandez, Roy Krishna, Prince Ibarra, Bruno Ramires, and Alan Costa.

New head coach Simon Grayson has acquired the services of Roy Krishna in attack, who will shape up as a lethal prospect with club icon Sunil Chhetri. The Blues have also signed Hernandez who will be crucial in linking the midfield to the attack with his creative output while the signing of Jovanovic will bolster the defensive department.

Chennaiyin FC

Foreign players: Fallou Diagne, Vafa Hakhamaneshi, Abdenasser El Khayati, Julius Duker, Kwame Karikari, and Petar Sliskovic.

The Marina Machans have done some solid business in their transfer window, overhauling their foreign contingent. Under the tutelage of new head coach Thomas Brdaric, the two-time Hero ISL champions have strengthened all departments, ticking all the sections in their squad as the German brings to the fore a new identity with his set of players.

East Bengal FC

Foreign players: Charis Kyriakou, Ivan Gonzalez, Alex Lima, Cleiton Silva, Eliandro dos Santos, and Jordan O’Doherty.

The Red and Gold Brigade underwent a massive rebuild led by new head coach Stephen Constantine ahead of the upcoming season. The former Indian senior national team head coach is well versed with Indian football and has the potential to turn the fortunes around for the Kolkata-based club. Three of the team’s new signings are familiar faces in the Hero ISL and the other three are completely new to the league, but Constantine will come prepared with his newly-led brigade.

FC Goa

Foreign players: Marc Valiente, Fares Arnaout, Iker Guarrotxena, Noah Sadaoui, Alvaro Vazquez, and Edu Bedia.

Carlos Pena’s FC Goa have brought in five new players while they have retained loyalist Edu Bedia. Pena, former player-turned-coach understands the principles of the club and his foreign signings will blend into the attacking style led by the Spaniard. With the services of Alvaro Vazquez, who had a splendid season last year, the Gaurs will be expecting more goals this season.

Hyderabad FC    

Foreign players: Odei Onaindia, Borja Herrera, Joel Chianese, Joao Victor, Javier Siverio, and Bartholomew Ogbeche.

One of the only teams with few changes in the foreign department, the reigning champions of the Hero ISL look rather unchanged, having made additions in the midfield and defence. Head coach Manolo Marquez will be banking on the services of talisman Bartholomew Ogbeche to feed the side with goals, while new signings Borja Herrera and Odei Onaindia will be essential assets in the team.

Jamshedpur FC

Foreign players: Jay Emmanuel-Thomas, Harry Sawyer, Wellington Priori, Daniel Chima Chukwu, Eli Sabia, and Peter Hartley.

With three new foreign signings, Aidy Boothroyd’s Jamshedpur FC have managed to keep a majority of the core intact. The void left by Greg Stewart in the attacking department will be expected to be filled by Jay Thomas and Harry Sawyer along with Daniel Chima Chukwu. The return of Wellington Priori to the team is another great addition for Boothroyd as he will be a pivotal player in the midfield.

Kerala Blasters FC

Foreign players: Victor Mongil, Ivan Kaliuzhnyi, Apostolos Giannou, Dimitrios Diamantakos, Marko Leskovic, and Adrian Luna.

The three-time Hero ISL finalists head into the new season with a rejuvenated side. Ivan Vukomanovic’s Kerala Blasters FC will look to go a step further in their pursuit of winning the Hero ISL trophy and the Hero ISL League Winners’ Shield. The Serbian will want his four new acquisitions to settle quickly in his system, having added two new forwards, a midfielder, and a defender in the team.

Mumbai City FC

Foreign players: Rostyn Griffiths, Alberto Noguera, Jorge Pereyra Diaz, Greg Stewart, Ahmed Jahouh, and Mourtada Fall.

The former Hero ISL champions have had one of the most shrewd acquisitions in the transfer market with four big signings in Greg Stewart, Jorge Pereyra Diaz, Alberto Noguera, Rostyn Griffiths. Three of the signings are accustomed to the Hero ISL, and have the potential to excel at their new club under head coach Des Buckingham. Griffiths, on the other hand, might offer the solution to the Islanders’ defensive woes as witnessed last season.

NorthEast United FC

Foreign players: Aaron Evans, Michael Jakobsen, Jon Gaztanaga, Romain Philippoteaux, Matt Derbyshire, Sylvester Igboun.

The Highlanders have opted for a complete rebuild under new head coach Marco Balbul, adding a whole new bunch of foreign players. With all of Balbul’s foreign signings being newcomers in the Hero ISL, it will be interesting to see how the Israeli will incorporate them in his team along with his Indian players. Fans will be hoping to see the Highlanders get back to winning ways and make it to the playoffs.

Odisha FC

Foreign players: Carlos Delgado, Osama Malik, Saul Crespo, Victor Rodriguez, Diego Mauricio, Pedro Martin.

The Kalinga Warriors too have gone through a complete overhaul in the foreign players department, having added five new fresh faces and resigned an old one. With head coach Josep Gombau making a return, Odisha FC have made some promising signings and the right blend of foreign and Indian players will be key to a successful season for the Bhubaneshwar-based side.

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