ISL: Anas Edathodika in talks with ATK

The India defender recently came out of international retirement and could now join the Kolkata side...

Two-time Indian Super League (ISL) champions ATK have emerged as the next possible destination for Anas Edathodika. The Kolkata outfit are in talks with the defender for a potential transfer, Goal understands.

The 32-year-old centre-back has recently come out of international retirement to feature in Igor Stimac's probables for the 2019 Intercontinental Cup in July. Edathodika called it quits for the national team after India's group stage exit from the 2019 Asian Cup in January earlier this year.

Anas' time at Kerala Blasters has not been smooth-sailing as the Malappuram-born defender could only make eight appearances for the club in the 2018-19 season. After sitting out the first three games of the season through a suspension which he carried over from his previous club, Jamshedpur FC, Anas battled with injuries throughout, failing to make much of an impact with the Yellows.

He had not played much for Jamshedpur in the 2017-18 season as well, owing to injuries.

Kerala Blasters are currently looking to build a young team for the upcoming season.

A late bloomer, Anas rose to prominence with Pune FC in the I-League, garnering over 100 caps with them. After two successful seasons with Delhi Dynamos in the ISL in 2015 and 2016, he made his international debut at the age of 30 in March 2017. Anas and Sandesh Jhingan struck a soild defensive partnership for the national team. However, there was not much success at the club level last season.

If the deal happens, Anas would return to Kolkata for a second time in his professional career after turning out for Mohun Bagan in 2017. ATK already have secured the services of Carl McHugh, the Irish centre half who joins from Scotland's Motherwell. ATK have also snapped up Salam Ranjan Singh and Jobby Justin from East Bengal.

After two seasons out of the top four, the ATK management have decided to recall Antonio Lopez Habas, the former Valencia manager. It was Habas who guided the Sanjiv Goenka co-owned side to glory in the inaugural edition of the ISL in 2014.