New Delhi [India], September 19 (ANI): Mohun Bagan Super Giant won the Indian Super League (ISL) 2022-23 Cup under head coach Juan Ferrando in the 2022-23 season. MBSG also qualified for the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup group stage after beating Gokulam Kerala in the Club Playoff and more recently won the Durand Cup title after beating their arch-rivals, East Bengal FC.
So, it has been a good few last months for the Mariners and they will head into the new season with a very positive mindset.
During the summer transfer window of 2023, Mohun Bagan Super Giant strengthened their squad with some signings. With the addition of top-class foreigners like Jason Cummings and Armando Sadiku and quality Indians like Sahal Abdul Samad and Anwar Ali, Mohun Bagan Super Giant "have formed a formidable squad for the ISL 2023-24 season", as per an ISL press release. "In the case of Mohun Bagan, we are a big club with a lot of trophies. We are talking about Mohun Bagan because of the trophies won," Ferrando said at the ISL Media8239;Day8239;in8239;Kolkata.
With more match-winners at his disposal, Ferrando would like to add to his list of accolades as a coach.
Performance in the ISL so farSince joining the ISL in 2020, the Mohun Bagan Super Giant have qualified for the playoffs for three consecutive years. MBSG had the opportunity to win the ISL Cup in their very first year under coach Antonio Lopez Habas. But they lost to Mumbai City FC in the final by a 2-1 scoreline, where MCFC's Bipin Singh scored the 90th-minute winner.
In ISL 2021-22, the Mariners struggled during the midseason. However, they bounced back under their newly appointed head coach, Ferrando, and made it to the playoffs. In the semi-final clash, they lost to Hyderabad FC by a single-goal margin.
The Mariners did not have to wait very long, as they won the ISL Cup in 2022-23 by defeating Bengaluru FC on penalties in the final. Australian forward Dimitri Petratos was their standout performer, scoring 12 goals and providing eight assists in the ISL Cup-winning year.
Team Composition and Transfer DealingsMohun Bagan Super Giant wisely used the summer transfer window to add more potential according to team dynamics. MBSG bid farewell to their captain, Pritam Kotal, and also released their crucial member, Carl McHugh.
ISL's most successful head coach, Antonio Lopez Habas, has also joined the Mariners, this time as their technical director.
With a star-stubbed team, MBSG is going to start the ISL 2023-24 season as one of the contenders.
Transfers-Ins: Hector Yuste, Sahal Abdul Samad, Anwar Ali, Anirudh Thapa, Armando Sadiku, and Jason Cummings-Outs: Lalthathanga Khawlhring 'Puitea', Carl McHugh, Pritam Kotal, Tiri, and Slavko DamajanovicKey Players-Jason CummingsThe Mariners have high expectations from their high-profile Australian forward, Jason Cummings. Cummings also featured in the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar.
Cummings came to India after completing his impressive stint with A-League outfit Central Coast Mariners. MBSG's 'big game player' has to prove his worth with his impactful performances. His goalscoring prowess and experience are going to be very effective for the Mariners.
-Dimitri PetratosDimitri Petratos has become the rescuer for Mohun Bagan Super Giant with his game-changing ability. He scored their two goals in the ISL Cup final and also netted the winner in the Durand Cup.
Petratos is showing his class after joining the ISL in 2022. In Petratos, MBSG gets a complete player with fine goalscoring and creative ability. He is technically very sound and can fit in any position in the attacking third.
-Anwar AliMohun Bagan Super Giant has undoubtedly made a smart move by securing the signing of Anwar Ali. Ali has been the best ball-playing Indian defender in recent times.
In terms of inch-perfect tackles, tight man marking, and sharp aerial ability, Ali is second to none. His goal threat in set-piece situations adds some extra strength to the team. The 23-year-old defender has been excellent since his very first day in the ISL and has established himself as a one of the most reliable players at the back.
FixturesMohun Bagan Super Giant will start their ISL 2023-24 journey against Punjab FC on September 23 at Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan in Kolkata. MBSG will face East Bengal FC on October 28 in the ISL 2023-24's first Kolkata derby.
Ferrando's boys will face Kerala Blasters FC at home on December 27 in their last game of 2023. (ANI)