ISL 2022: Crivellaro-less Chennaiyin begins season against Hyderabad

Two-time Indian Super League (ISL) champion Chennaiyin FC has had a complete overhaul this time. It has recruited a new coach in Bozidar Bandovic and acquired many Indian players and a fresh set of five foreigners.

On the other hand, Hyderabad FC has a relatively settled team, having retained the core of Indian players, and acquiring two of the best foreigners in ISL โ€” midfielder Edu Garcia (Spain) and top striker Bartholomew Ogbeche (Nigeria).

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Bandovic said he was aware of the challenges when Chennaiyin takes on Hyderabad in its first match of the new 2021-22 season at the Bambolim Stadium, Goa.

โ€œTo bring the players together in a very short time has been a challenge. There are many new [Indian] players and many foreigners. In football, nobody waits. They want immediate results. We will handle this for sure,โ€ said the 52-year-old Montenegrin at a virtual media interaction on Monday.

According to Bandovic, the most important thing is to win. โ€œThere are different solutions we can use and I am trying to choose the best one to win the games,โ€ he said.

Chennaiyinโ€™s Rafael Crivellaro is still nursing an injury (gluteal), while Germanpreet Singh will not play on Tuesday, also due to an (undisclosed) injury.

Hyderabadโ€™s coach Manolo Marquez, in a release, said: โ€œWe can no longer compare ourselves to the previous season [it narrowly missed out a spot in the semifinals and finished fifth). We want to continue the development of our youngsters and we want to show our fans that we can improve on last season.โ€

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