India's future: Top young players to keep an eye for in the Hero ISL 2022-23 season
With the Hero ISL 2022-23 season up and coming, another set of young forwards have come to the fore with their respective clubs who are buzzing with technique and flair, ready to crack the pitch and make their presence felt.
The Hero Indian Super League (ISL) is known to give rise to young Indian players who are looking to develop their football skills and showcase their hidden talent. Over the years, several young players, who showed immense potential, have lived up to their capacity and made a mark in the league, with their names being cherished by fans from all over the nation.
With the Hero ISL 2022-23 season upon us, another set of young Turks have come to the fore with their respective clubs who are buzzing with technique and flair, ready to dazzle the pitch and make their presense felt.
Here is a look at young Indian players to keep an eye for in the Hero ISL 2022-23 season.
Narender Gahlot (Odisha FC)
Gahlot made headway in the 2021-22 season as he won the Hero ISL League Winners’ Shield with former club Jamshedpur FC under former head coach Owen Coyle. The defender was a crucial player under Coyle as he played 15 matches where he made 33 clearances, 26 tackles, 15 interceptions, 10 blocks, proving to be a bankable defender who will now be an integral part in the backline at his new club Odisha FC.
Kiyan Nassiri Giri (ATK Mohun Bagan)
The 22-year-old, who got limited gametime with his team, was terrific in his last year’s contest against arch-rivals East Bengal FC as he scored a match-winning hat-trick after coming off the bench in the second half to deliver his side an all-important three points. Ever since, Nassiri has been in radar and has been one of the hottest prospects to watch out for, given his pace and quick footwork with the ball.
Sivasakthi Narayanan (Bengaluru FC)
The Blues’ knight in shining armour, Narayanan stole the show with an incredible performance - stunning everyone after coming off the bench - as he played a vital cog in their Durand Cup triumph. Top scorer in the B division of Bengaluru FC, Narayanan extended his red hot form in the Durand Cup and was exploitative on the pitch from the get go. The 21-year-old was the top scorer, netting five goals for his team in the coveted competition.
Lalchungnunga Chhangte (Hyderabad FC)
Chhangte, who hails from Mizoram, underwent a training stint with Bundesliga - Germany’s top-flight football league - and has been a local sensation around his area. The 21-year-old featured in the RF Development League followed by gametime with the first team in the recently conducted Durand Cup where the midfielder bagged an assist. Under head coach Manolo Marquez - who is renowned for his ability of developing young talents around the world - Chhangte has one of the best possible opportunities to hone his skills and shine in the league.
Himanshu Jangra (East Bengal FC)
The 18-year-old young prodigy has already plied his trade through more than five clubs, and now finds himself at East Bengal FC where he has the potential to excel under new head coach Stephen Constantine. The forward is known for his searing pace and quick dribbling along with a top-notch finishing ability. Having known Indian football since quite a long time, Constantine will look to develop a rapport with Jangra and enhance his abilities with more gametime.
Vikram Partap Singh (Mumbai City FC)
Singh got the opportunity to shine under head coach Des Buckingham last season as he exploited in key matches with three essential goals. Although he might not have found his footing yet, the 21-year-old possesses a great attacking threat and will likely flourish under the guidance of Buckingham along with the presence of new forwards Greg Stewart and Jorge Pereyra Diaz.
Muhammed Nemil (FC Goa)
Although Nemil didn’t open his goalscoring account in an underwhelming FC Goa campaign last season, he still possesses the flair in the midfield given his ability to do quick turns, body feints, and swift dribbling. The 20-year-old - who underwent a training stint with RFYC in Spain a couple years back - has a vibrant opportunity with new head coach Carlos Pena to be an important asset in the midfield department alongside a torrent of experienced foreign as well as Indian players.