FC Pune City have a major chance to clinch the Indian Super League title for the first time as they have roped in a team of winners for the 2016 season. Coach Antonio Habas and goalkeeper Edel Bete are the two standout names in the side this time around.
They might have lost Eidur Gudjohnsen owing to injury, but that will possibly not prevent the Hrithik Roshan co-owned side from putting up a brave display this time around. Indian midfield maestro Eugeneson Lyngdoh, who has been achieving a lot of targets with Bengaluru FC, is retained by the side, while new names have also come in.
Arata Izumi, who remained impressive for Atletico de Kolkata last season in the Indian Super League, has been roped in along with Barcelona youth products Tato and Pitu. Jonatan Lucca and Narayan Das make the side a formidable one.
Let's look into certain key aspects of FC Pune City ahead of ISL 2016
FC Pune City participated in a successful month-long preseason camp at Vincci Valdecanas in Madrid, Spain.
Coach - Antonio Habas (replaces David Platt)
Arata Izumi, Eugeneson Lyngdoh, Sanju Pradhan, Jonatan Lucca (midfielders), Edel Bete (goalkeeper), Narayan Das, Gouramangi Singh (defenders).
What to expect in ISL 2016
Goal-scoring has been a major worry for the Pune side in the past two seasons and it remains to be seen if that trend can be changed this year. FC Pune City managed to score just 17 goals last year and have netted a total of 29 times over the course of the past two seasons.
Antonio Habas is regarded as one of the greatest coaches in the Indian Super League history and it can be expected that the Spaniard could, at the best, inspire FC Pune City to enter the top four for the first time.
Edel Bete is almost like a lucky charm in the ISL and his presence is enough for the team to fix their eyes on glory. The powerful goalkeeper won the title in the inaugural season with Atletico de Kolkata and went on to lift the title next year again with Chennaiyin FC.
October 3 - Against Mumbai City FC at Balewadi Stadium in Pune.