Since joining the Indian Super League (ISL) side Bengaluru FC from Rayo Vallecano in the summer of 2017, Nicolas Fedor alias Miku has scored 16 goals in 22 matches.
His competitors for the 2017/18 Golden Boot were FC Goa's Ferran Corominas (20) and Sunil Chhetri (14).
Although he lost the top scorer gong to Coro, the 33-year-old Venezuelan's exploits took his team into the final in their first ever season in ISL. The striker's hunger and commitment were commendable and he was often seen helping out his teammates in the defensive third of the field whenever required.
Miku's primary target has always been to score goals. His Bengaluru FC stint has unlocked the complete forward in him, with the 33-year-old having played one of his career-best seasons in terms of league goals. Moreover, he had signed for two years with the Blues.
"All the strikers live for goals and Miku and Sunil (Chhetri) got us an extraordinary number of goals last season. So it will be one of the aims this season - to try to get the same quantity of goals from both these guys. From this point of view, the strikers are fundamental to our game," Carles Cuadrat told Goal.
However, depending on just Miku to deliver in the final third is a risky approach. The combination of Sunil Chhetri and Miku produced 29 out of the 40 goals scored by Bengaluru in ISL last season. While both players, aged over thirty, showcased incredible fitness levels throughout the 2017-18 season, having no plan B in attack will become a huge concern if fatigue or injury issues come into play.
Miku is an irreplaceable asset for Bengaluru FC at the moment. He is a good header of the ball, can take defenders on, uses his physical traits well against defenders and has a mean shot on him. Although Coro is a fox in the box and a prolific goalscorer, Miku is a unique all-round striker.
In the first two games of the season, everything good that Bengaluru FC did up front went through Miku and the Venezuelan looks menacing in attack. Probably, the only successful move which did not involve Miku was Sunil Chhetri's headed goal against Jamshedpur FC.
Though Miku has scored only one of three goals the Blues have scored, what is evident is that Carles Cuadrat's side are becoming more and more reliant on the Venezuelan up front. Udanta Singh and Chhetri are yet to find any sort of form which held them in good stead last season.
Cuadrat had shown an affinity towards 4-4-2 both in pre-season and in AFC Cup games but he has since reverted to a 4-2-3-1 in ISL matches. Both shapes demand Miku's heavy involvement in the attacking third and the same will be extremely vital in Bengaluru FC's quest for the title.