What really made ISL stand-out from the other leagues was the star power involved and the money. But apart from these two the presence of a marquee player is the main draw of the tournaments. Not only did it give the chance to the millions of Indians to watch their favorite players of yore play in India but was also a great learning experience for the young Indian Players. Here we look at Top 10 ISL Foreign Footballers.
Top 10 ISL Foreign Footballers
Though India has had its domestic football leagues, none of them matches the extravaganza of ISL. No wonder that it became such a hit with its debut season.
10. Edel Bete
At number 10 in ISL Foreign Footballers is Edel Bete. This Armenian Footballer plays for FC Pune City. He is one of the reasons for Athletico de Kolkata to win the ISL trophy thanks to his great work between the poles. His performance in the finals was especially excellent and his acrobatic 83rd minute save changed the course of the match. He also has some serious European street credentials to his name thanks to his stints at PSG. At PSG he starred 47 matches. Fans of Pune will be looking forward to his dynamic catching at the goal post. No doubt he is one of the best ISL goalkeepers.
At number 9 is Lucio. This Brazilian defender is a true legend having played for European giants like Bayern Munich, Inter Milan and Juventus. He won Champions League with Inter, three Bundesliga with Bayern and won the 2002 World Cup with Brazil. One of the best defenders of all time in his prime, even at 38 he still manages to shine and show the glimpses of his past glory. He is a tough opponent to get past in the final third and is sure to help Goa keep a tight back line in this season of ISL. He is among the best Legendary players playing in ISL.
8. Carlos Marchena
At number 8 in ISL Foreign Footballers is Carlos Marchena. This former Spanish player is a club legend for Valencia where he made 230 appearances. He might be a central defender but has enough aggressive be it for stopping the ball or for taking it forward. His aggression means that he often picks up an odd goal due to his high pressure on the opposition defense. He has won the World cup, Euro, Europa cup and the La Liga title, making him one of the most decorated players in ISL. He is poised to be a strong figure in the Kerala side both for holding defensive lines and to provide an odd long ball to the midfielders and strikers.
7. Bernard Mendy
At number 7 in ISL Foreign Footballers is Bernard Mendy. This French footballer might have not been famous in India before but after ISL he has become a household name. He has considerable experience having appeared for PSG in 189 matches and also having played two seasons in Premier League with Hull City. He is among the Best ISL Defenders and is surely be looking forward to hold the defensive line for Chennaiyin FC.
6. Borja Fernandez
At number 6 in ISL Foreign Footballers is Borja Fernandez. He is one of the underrated ISL Players who might not be flashy but gets the job done for his team. Playing as a defensive midfielder, Borja Fernandez is always on the move be it in defense or attack and plays very important role during counterattacks. He is gifted tactician who was instrumental in the success of Athletico de Kolkata in ISL due to the ease with which he connected the defense to the attack. Before coming to India, he spent his entire career in Spain playing for clubs like Real Madrid, Valladolid and Getafe and appearing in 300 matches over there.
At number 5 in ISL Foreign Footballers is Simao. Simao is one of the best players to have emerged from Portugal in recent times. He is primarily a left winger due to his great dribbling abilities. His skill at set pieces is also really great. One of the best ISL Midfielders, he has set the game alight with his great dribbling and crossing in the final third. He has played for several big clubs like Barcelona, Benifica and Athletico Madrid. With Athletico Madrid he went on to win the Europa Cup and UEFA Super Cup. He will be the key man for NorthEast United this season.
4. Helder Postiga
At number 4 in ISL Foreign Footballers is Helder Postiga. He has been one of the underrated players in Europe during his stint there but in ISL he is surely flourishing and is thus one of the most wanted commodities. This Portuguese striker began his career at Porto like many of the Portuguese greats before him. There he won 8 silverware and went on to play 193 games in Primeira Liga scored 54 goals. He also represented his country regularly at international level and earned 71 caps helping Portugal to reach the finals of EURO 2004. He is all set to become one of Best ISL Marquee Players this season.
3. Adrian Mutu
At number 3 is Adrian Mutu. He is one of the best Romanian footballers of all time having won the Romanian Footballer of the Year award four times. His career might have seen another direction if it had not been for his two long suspensions due to failing drug test. He natural attacking player who operates in midfield and winger position, he has played for many big clubs like Chelsea, Juventus and Inter Milan. One of the best players for his country he has scored 35 times in 77 appearances. Playing for Pune he is among the Best ISL strikers.
2. Nicolas Anelka
At number 2 in ISL Foreign Footballers is Nicolas Anelka. Nicolas Anelka needs to introduction. He is one of the best strikers of his generation and has played for many of the heavyweights of European football like Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Real Madrid and Manchester City. Nicolas was also a regular member of the French national side during his active years and has 69 nationals caps with 14 goals. He is known for his aerial ability, technique, shooting and movement with the ball. Nicolas also has the ability to both score and set up goals for others making him a valuable asset to his team. Though his first season might not be up to the mark but he is among the Best ISL overseas recruit so watch out for him this season.
1. Iain Hume
At number 1 in ISL Foreign Footballers is Iain Hume. This Canadian Footballer might have been a virtual nobody compared to the other greats on this list but he has certainly lighted up the show at ISL. He is no doubt among the Best ISL players and he has stats to back him up considering he is the highest goal scorer in ISL with 18. In his first season in ISL he established himself as one of the best players in the league and subsequently got better showing his best in 2015 season with Athletico de Kolkata where he scored 11 goals off 16 matches.
These are some of the best Foreign players who you should be looking out for in this season of ISL.