Indian Super League entourage reaches Goa minus East Bengal and Bengaluru FC

Goa: Nine out of the eleven teams – which are to take part in the latest edition of the Indian Super League (ISL) – have reached Goa and have begun their pre-season training camps in the coastal state, according to information provided by the organizers of the event.

The only exceptions are Bengaluru FC and East Bengal. Bengaluru FC are presently training at their academy facility, Inspire Institute of Sport, in Bellary.

Bengaluru FC players in training at the Inspire Institute of Sport,
in Bellary.

The ISI teams started arriving in the state since September 25 in the state, which has recorded close to 500 deaths on account of Covid-19. The teams  began their pre-season training in the coastal state from October 1.

The seventh edition ISL will be held across three stadiums, namely Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Fatorda, the GMC Athletic Stadium in Bambolim and the Tilak Maidan Stadium in Vasco.

The stadiums have been allotted to teams based on their standings from the previous season and each team has been allotted a separate training pitch.

Bengaluru FC defender Rahul Bheke in training at the Inspire
Institute of Sport, in Bellary

FC Goa training ground is Salvador do Mundo grounds while ATK Mohan Bagan base is  at Trinity ground, Benaulim.

The other teams are training at the following grounds: Chennaiyin FC at SAG ground, Utorda, Mumbai City at Panchayat ground, Nagoa, Odisha FC at SAG ground, Betalbatim;  Kerala Blasters at Peddem Complex, Mapusa; Jamshedpur FC at Panchayat ground, Sangolda; NorthEast at Panchayat ground, Candolim and Hyderabad FC at School ground, Guirim.

Bengaluru FC defender Pratik Chaudhari in training at the Inspire
Institute of Sport, in Bellary.

Bengaluru FC when they arrive in Goa will train at the Dempo Academy ground, Ella-Old Goa.

Meanwhile East Bengal, the latest addition to the Indian Super League family are yet to reach Goa they will also be allotted a training ground, organizers of the event said.

Bengaluru FC players in training at the Inspire Institute of
Sport, in Bellary.

Pandit Jawaharlal Stadium has been home ground of FC Goa, since the inception of the ISL and hosted two finals, in 2015 and 2019.

Goa has hosted two finals of the Indian Super League and are now handed the hosting duties for the entire upcoming season.

Bengaluru FC begin pre-season training at Inspire Institute of Sport

As many as 29 Bengaluru FC players have begun their pre-season training at the club’s Academy facility in the North Karnataka district.

With the club’s foreign contingent still awaiting their Visas, first-team Indian Assistant Coach Naushad Moosa and the rest of the Indian staff have been handling the sessions, while in contact with Head Coach Carles Cuadrat and the rest of the technical staff, who are in Spain.

Bengaluru FC players in training at the Inspire Institute of Sport,
in Bellary.

“We would have liked to begin our pre-season with a complete team – that includes foreign staff and players, but given the situation with visas and travel, this was a hurdle we saw coming and had planned for it in advance. This is Naushad Moosa’s fourth season with the club and that’s a big advantage. The moment we received an indication from the League about the season beginning in the third week of November, we went about planning to ensure our pre-season begins on time,” said club CEO Mandar Tamhane.

While a host of the club’s new signings having joined the squad in Bellary, the pre-season is also being used as a chance to assess as many as nine youngsters who have travelled as part of the club’s reserves setup.

“What we are in the middle of is not the most ideal situation, but it is one we have little control over. However, our work at the club doesn’t stop, and we have been in touch with the players and the coaches on what we expect from them. I have been in touch with the management with regard to scouting for players, arranging pre-season games and other aspects. Importantly, we are working every day to ensure that we can join the team as soon as possible,” said Head Coach Carles Cuadrat.

With the Indian Super League season set to kick off in November, the Blues expect a three-week preseason training stint in the state-of-the-art Inspire Institute of Sport campus, ahead of a trip to Goa, where their home matches will be played out of the Nehru Stadium, in Fatorda. “As players, we’ve been impatient and excited to train together and you can feel the energy among the boys in Bellary. We’ve all been training independently for too long now and were waiting to begin our pre-season. I cannot wait for the rest of the boys and the coaching staff to join us soon,” said goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu.

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