Goals encapsulate a delightful moment but there’s always a lot of work that's done before the ball goes past the line. A well constructed and executed move, at the centre of which lies the killer pass.

An assist is the final pass provided to the goalscorer; at times, it goes unnoticed while at other times it is better than the goal itself. Assists form a crucial part of not just the goal but also the gameplay as not many players have the ability to find their teammates with the right pass at the right moment.

The Hero Indian Super League (ISL) has produced several assist providers, who have taken the game a notch higher and outdone others time and again, season after season. Here we look at the all-time leading assist providers in the Hero ISL.

Hugo Boumous (29 assists in 75 games) - ATK Mohun Bagan

Topping the assists leader board, Boumous has been one of the most prolific forwards when it comes to creating chances and being consistent in providing assists. Having made his mark at three different clubs - FC Goa, Mumbai City FC, and ATK Mohun Bagan, the forward was pivotal in bringing silverware to FC Goa and Mumbai City FC. While a silverware still awaits for him at the Mariners, the 27-year-old remains a key player under the tenure of Juan Ferrando.

Brandon Fernandes (19 assists in 71 games) - FC Goa

The highest Indian assist provider in the Hero ISL, Fernandes is renowned for his ball carrying ability and is regarded as one of the best assist providers in the country. The midfielder has been highly influential in FC Goa’s Hero ISL campaigns, and was the force behind the Gaurs’ maiden League Winners’ Shield triumph. While injuries have hampered large parts of the last two seasons and might have affected his numbers, the 27-year-old is still a favourite among the FC Goa faithful. 

Marcelinho (19 assists in 87 games) - NorthEast United FC

The Brazilian got off to a magical start in his debut Hero ISL season with then Delhi Dynamos FC in 2016 as he had 15 goal involvements including 10 goals and five assists, taking home the Golden Boot for that season. Marcelinho continued his magical spell in the following seasons with then FC Pune City - becoming their top goal contributor, and also played an integral role at Hyderabad FC in the 2019-20 season. The 35-year-old remains as one of the best talents to have ever played the Hero ISL. 

Ahmed Jahouh (19 assists in 91 games) - Mumbai City FC

Jahouh began his Hero ISL career with FC Goa in the 2017-18 season, and established himself as a great midfielder, specialising in the passing and tackling department. Gradually, the Moroccan developed himself in all attributes, becoming a complete midfielder and leading the team from the middle of the park. The 34-year-old was a vital cog in FC Goa’s League Winners’ Shield triumph and also played a critical role in Mumbai City FC’s double title-winning campaign in the 2021-22 season, and is a crucial asset for the Des Buckingham side.

Roy Krishna (18 assists in 60 games) - Bengaluru FC

Bengaluru FC’s newest addition to the squad, Roy Krishna took the Hero ISL by storm after racking a staggering 15 goals and six assists in his debut season with ATK FC in the 2019-20 campaign. Krishna propelled his side to their third Hero ISL title and clinched the Hero of the League award in his very first season. The Fijian continued his exploitative attacking abilities with ATK Mohun Bagan in the following two seasons, registering 21 goals and 12 assists and is widely regarded as one of the most lethal attackers of the Hero ISL.