Kerala Blasters FC is one of the eight teams that will have their hopes of lifting the ISL trophy at the end of the season; the team is co-owned by South Indian actor Chiranjeevi, as well as Indian cricketing legend Sachin 'Master Blaster' Tendulkar!
Home Ground: Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Kochi
Manager: Steve Coppell
Marquee Player: Aaron Hughes
Kerala Blasters FC have seens both the ups and downs of the Indian Super League - they reached the final of the first season, losing to Atletico de Kolkata in the last seconds, while they finished poorly at the bottom of the table in the second season. They also have the undesirable records of having scored the least goals in the first season and having conceded the most goals in ISL season 2!
Coached by ex Manchester United winger Steve Coppell, the Blasters will be confident coming into Season 3, as they were undefeated in their three pre-season matches in Thailand. They beat BBCU FC 2-1, followed by a goalless draw against Bangkok United FC and won 1-0 against players of Phrae United and BEC Tero football clubs.
These games saw two goals from 32-year old Michael Chopra, former Newcastle United and England striker. His presence could ensure a better performance from Kerala this year around. They are up at odds of 5 with India Bet to win ISL 3, and even though I expect a much better performance from them as compared to last year, I don't think the team is capable of winning the title!
They will play the first game of the league - North East United FC v Kerala Blasters FC - 19:00 IST on 1st October 2016!
Kerala Blasters FC Squad:
Mohammed Ansari, Sandip Nandy, Kunal Sawant, Graham Stack, Rino Anto, Pratik Chowdhary, Cédric Hengbart, Aaron Hughes, Sandesh Jhingan, Elhadji Ndoye, Gurwinder Singh, Ishfaq Ahmed, Josu, Mehtab Hossain, Prasanth Karuthadathkuni, Didier Kadio, Azrack Mahamat, Mohammed Rafique, Mohammed Rafi, Vinit Rai, Ck Vineeth, Kervens Belfort, Michael Chopra, Farukh Choudhary, Antonio German, Thongkhosiem Haokip, Duckens Nazon.