ISL's domestic quota rises to 79 - report

With just five more players required to fulfill the domestic quota for draft picks, the ISL looks to be well and truly rolling in the right direction, more willing to join

In a fresh and encouraging bout of news that will no doubt offer hope to fans, supporters and promoters of the Indian Super League (ISL), Adil Khan and Milagres Gonsalves have signed contracts with the organizers for the inaugural season of the competition, according to a report in The Times of India.

A mandatory set of at least 84 Indian players were a necessary for the teams in ISL to choose from, with each club needing up to fourteen Indian players. With Shillong Lajong and Dempo SC all but guaranteeing their respective ISL franchises. 

The total talent pool of domestic players has now reached 79, with just five more slots to fill. Subhash Singh (Shillong Lajong), Lester Fernandez (Mumbai Tigers), Deepak Devrani (Sporting Clube de Goa), Godwin Franco (Dempo SC) and Asif Kottayil (United SC) are players who have a contract offer and realistically could sign on for the tournament with a day’s time.

“The deadline for signing up domestic players is June 30. We will surely meet our target.  Each franchise is required to have 14 Indian players on their roster which means we will need around 100 footballers.

“But with the Goa and Guwahati franchises opting to sign players from their own teams (Dempo SC and Shillong Lajong FC, respectively), 84 domestic players should be enough,“ elucidated a spokesperson connected with the tournament.

With organizer willing to pay up to five months’ salary to all contracted players participating in the tournament, it has been also documented that East Bengal lead the charge with most players loaned to the ISL, with figures reaching 18 personnel. Mohun Bagan come next with 10 loanees and then come Mumbai FC with 6.

A list of other players who are considering signing on with the cash-rich tournament include the likes Lenny Rodrigues, Denzil Franco, Arindam Bhattacharya, Jaison Vales and Anthony Barbosa, all from the now suspended I-League side Churchill Brothers, who along with Salgaocar FC, Pune FC, Sporting Clube de Goa, and Bengaluru FC had refused to comply with the pleas of the ISL organizers for loaning out their players.