ISL 2021-22: The season for Chennaiyin FC to redeem their lost glory
Chennaiyin FC had many ups and downs throughout the past seven years in the ISL. The Bridge takes a look at the reasons which could lead them to revamp their title hopes this season.
Chennaiyin FC, the football club that represents the emotions of thousands across Tamil Nadu had many ups and downs throughout the past seven years in the Indian Super League. The Marina Machans were the ISL champions in 2015 and 2017. They were also the first-ever league winners of Hero Indian Super League with 23 points from 14 matches in the inaugural season of Hero Indian Super League in 2014. The Chennai-based outlet has only failed thrice to qualify for the playoffs. The Bridge takes a look at the reasons which could lead Chennaiyin to revamp its title hopes.
Right use of transfer window
After reaching the finals in the 2019-20 season with a revival campaign under Owen Coyle, the club had a dreadful season last year. They finished eighth just above SC East Bengal, Kerala Blasters, and Odisha FC. They gained a total of 20 points from 20 games under the Hungarian coach Csaba László. But now ahead of the new season Chennaiyin FC has done some major renovation in their squad. The faithful Brazilian midfielder Rafael Crivellaro is the only foreign player whom the club has retained.
The CFC think-tank has rightfully used the transfer window as they have brought in some excellent Indian and foreign talents ahead of the new season. CFC has made a squad with the perfect blend of both young and experienced players. They have signed the likes of Mirlan Murzaev, Vladimir Koman, Lukasz Gikiewicz, Ariel Borysiuk, and Slavko Damjanovic as their new foreigners. Among the indigenous players, CFC has acquired the services of Narayan Das, Salam Ranjan Singh, Joby Justin, Debjit Majumder, Deepak Devrani, Ninthoi Meetei, Davinder Singh, and a few more.-
Experienced gaffer on board
After the departure of Csaba László, Chennaiyin has appointed Montenegrin tactician Božidar Bandović as the club's new manager for the upcoming season. Bandović has coached various clubs like Olympiacos, AOK Kerkyra, AE Larisa, FK Baku, Sisaket FC, Buriram United, etc. He has won consecutive league trophies with Buriram United in 2016-17 and 2018-18 season in the Thai League. He had also won the manager of the year award in 2017/18 season. Buriram United made a record total of 87 points from 34 games in the 2017/18 season under Bandović. Bandović broke his own record of 86 points from 34 games in the season before that with the club.
With all these experiences and titles under his belt, Bandović is expected to come up with a competitive squad that will be able to show a good fight for the top four. The Supermachans are eagerly waiting for the renaissance of their club with a new footballing philosophy to redeem their lost glory.