Indian Super League (ISL) franchise Delhi Dynamos started their pre-season practice sessions on Monday in Spain, under the tutelage of new head coach Miguel Angel Portugal.
The Lions have seen an overhaul in their squad, mainly due to the ISL drafts, but had also not exercised their right to retain two players from last season - becoming the only team to go down that alley.
Almost all the players attended the session, with India international Pritam Kotal being the lone exception, Goal has learnt. The former Mohun Bagan right-back, who was touring Macau due to his commitments with the national team, faced problems procuring his visa on time and will leave on 16th to join the rest of the squad.
In Spain, Dynamos are using the infrastructure of second division team Cultural y Deportivo Leonesa, who are now ninth in the table after four matches - ahead of the likes of Rayo Vallecano, Granada and Real Zaragoza. After spending close to a month in Spain, the team will fly to Aspire Academy in Qatar for the second half of pre-season.
Today I have started my new experience with Delhi Dynamos in Leon (Spain). Very excited about this new protect pic.twitter.com/1Q4a0KdfFi— Miguel A. Portugal (@maportugal55) September 11, 2017
The team has recently signed Nigerian forward Kalu Uche after roping in the likes of Paulinho Dias and Matias Mirabaje. The Indian contingent has well-known faces like Albino Gomes, Seityasen Singh and Romeo Fernandes but whether they can become regular match-winners in the high-profile league is something to be seen.
Going to Spain for pre-season has been a regular affair for many ISL franchises in the past seasons and this year is no exception. While Bengaluru FC have already a short stay in the country before embarking on the unfinished AFC Cup business with a new-look squad, while Mumbai City, FC Goa and Kerala Blasters will also follow suit.