Bengaluru FC on Sunday announced their 32-man squad for the upcoming 2021-22 Indian Super League season with talisman Sunil Chhetri set to lead the team for a ninth consecutive season. (More Football News)
The team, coached by German-Italian Marco Pezzaiuoli, is set to face NorthEast United in its campaign-opener on November 20.
On the occasion of Children's Day, the club had students from Sri Guru Harkrishan School in Bengaluru draw the players for the announcement of the squad, which was made via a post on Bengaluru FC's social media handles.
"It's a good group that has a nice mix of youngsters and foreigners, and a good base of Indian internationals. There are a lot of different personalities in this squad, who will bring important things to the team.
"Our aim is to make the players we have better, as the season progresses and to also finish in a much better position than we did last season," said Blues head coach, Marco Pezzaiuoli.
The squad that comprises as many as three players who played in the club's reserve squad last season -- Akashdeep Singh, Damaitphang Lyngdoh and Sivasakthi Narayanan.
"It's important to remember that our efforts will need time. We've trained with the complete squad together for the first time only after the first week of November. The idea is to get everyone up to speed as fast as possible.
"All the parts will have to come together to form the big picture and the effort is on to make it happen soon," Pezzaiuoli added.
The Blues' foreign contingent for the season include Brazilians Cleiton Silva, Bruno Ramires and Alan Costa, Congolese striker Prince Ibara, Iranian midfielder Iman Basafa and Gabonese centre-back Yrondu Musavu-King.
The 2021-22 campaign is Bengaluru's fifth in the Indian Super League, with the Blues having made the final in their first two seasons, winning in 2018-19, and the semifinal the following year, in 2019-20.
Chhetri had led the same team for four seasons in I-League.
Goalkeepers: Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Lara Sharma, Sharon Padattil;
Defenders: Pratik Chaudhari, Wungngayam Muirang, Ajith Kumar, Parag Shrivas, Alan Costa, Sarthak Golui, Yrondu Musavu-King;
Midfielders: Suresh Wangjam, Ajay Chhetri, Ashique Kuruniyan, Namgyal Bhutia, Naorem Roshan Singh, Biswa Darjee, Damaitphang Lyngdoh, Akashdeep Singh, Rohit Kumar, Jayesh Rane, Danish Farooq, Bruno Ramires, Iman Basafa;
Forwards: Sunil Chhetri, Edmund Lalrindika, Udanta Singh, Cleiton Silva, Leon Augustine, Sivasakthi Narayanan, Prince Ibara, Harmanpreet Singh, Bidyashagar Singh.