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ISL 2022-23 Chennaiyin FC Team Preview: Squad, Fixtures, Key Players, Strength, Weakness, Predictions

Chennaiyin FC

Bengaluru, October 3: Two-time Indian Super League (ISL) champions Chennaiyin FC (CFC) begin their campaign under new coach Thomas Brdaric with the talismanic Anirudh Thapa having his task cut out as the captain.

Nasser El Khayati joins the Marina Machans as a seventh foreign acquisition and is a part of the registered international unit for the 2022-23 ISL campaign.

He replaces Rafael Crivellaro as the club's midfield option having played in a similar role in the Dutch first division in May 2022.

The Dutch footballer joins vice-captain and Senegalese international Fallou Diagne, Iranian defender Vafa Hakhamaneshi, German midfielder Julius Duker and attackers Kwame Karikari and Petar Sliskovic from Ghana and Croatia respectively; all of whom took part in the Durand Cup.

This year, CFC kickstart their campaign on October 10, when they take on ATK Mohun Bagan away.


Petar, Julius, Vafa and Karikari all found the back of the net over the five games they played in the Durand Cup.

In the Durand Cup, Petar top scored for Chennaiyin FC scoring three goals while skipper Anirudh Thapa scored twice and assisted three.

The competition also saw Edwin Sydney get his first goal for the club, while the likes of Aakash Sangwan and Ninthoinganba Meetei also impressed - all part of the league squad.

Some key absentees during the Durand Cup who will be a part of the season are Mohammed Rafique, Alexander Romario Jesuraj, Sourav Das and Vincy Baretto.

Good omen

Good omen

The Machans wound up their campaign with a 5-1 in over ISL rivals Odisha FC in their last pre-season friendly and that should hold them in good stead ahead of the season.

Skipper Anirudh Thapa, Rahim Ali, Petar Sliskovic, Kwame Karikari and Suhail Pasha scored a goal each for CFC while Odisha FC's lone goal came from Diego Mauricio's strike.

Good preparation

Good preparation

The Marina Machans will open their ISL 2022-23 campaign with an away game in Kolkata against ATK Mohun Bagan in their first game of the campaign (October 10). CFC then return home for two back-to-back games against Bengaluru FC and FC Goa (October 14 and 21).

The club coached by Brdaric and led by the talismanic Thapa had started their preparations early in August, taking on Kolkata's Kidderpore SC (5-1) before playing out a draw against Army Green (1-1) prior to the Durand Cup.

Squad and Key Players

Squad and Key Players

While there has been a complete overhaul of their foreign contingent, the team has also reinforced their Indian contingent with a profusion of several youth players alongside experienced campaigners.

CFC Squad:

Goalkeepers: Debjit Majumder, Samik Mitra, Devansh Dabas, Lovepreet Singh.

Defenders: Narayan Das, Aakash Sangwan, Vafa Hakhamaneshi, Fallou Diagne, Gurmukh Singh, Mohd Sajid Dhot, Ajith Kumar, Monotosh Chakladar, Mohd Aqib.

Midfielders: Nasser El Khayati, Jiteshwor Singh, Anirudh Thapa, Edwin Vanspaul, Julius Duker, Sajal Bag, Chris White, Mohammed Rafique, Sourav Das, Suhail Pasha

Forwards: Ninthoi Meetei, Vincy Barretto, Rahim Ali, Romario Jesuraj, Petar Sliskovic, Kwame Karikari, Prasanth Karuthadathkuni, Jockson Dhas, Senthamizh, Jobby Justin, Gulab Singh, Mohamed Liyaakath.

Fixtures and predictions

Fixtures and predictions

This year, CFC kickstart their campaign on October 10, when they take on ATK Mohun Bagan away, before hosting Bengaluru FC at the Marina Arena on October 14.

After having failed to make it to the play-offs last season, the Marina Machans, under new coach Brdaric will be eyeing a much better show this time around.

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Story first published: Monday, October 3, 2022, 18:34 [IST]
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