Indian Super League 2020-21, the seventh edition of the league, is all set to kick off from November 20 between 11 teams in Goa. All the matches will take place in Goa as the organisers have create a bio-bubble considering the coronavirus situation.
The 11 teams participating in the league are: ATK Mohun Bagan, Bengaluru FC, Chennaiyin FC, FC Goa, Hyderabad FC, Jamshedpur FC, Kerala Blasters, Mumbai City FC, NorthEast United FC, Odisha FC, SC East Bengal.
— Indian Super League (@IndSuperLeague) October 21, 2020
This season, Kolkata giants Mohun Bagan and East Bengal have joined ISL. Mohun Bagan merged with the already-existing ISL franchise ATK to become ATK Mohun Bagan. East Bengal sold a majority stake in the club to Shree Cement in order to make the entry into the ISL.
The ISL, this season, have also made it mandatory for the clubs to have at least one AFC player in their ranks. AFC player means any player who has citizenship of the countries that come under Asian Football Confederation. Most ISL clubs have gone to A-League (Australia) to fill their AFC quota.
FC Goa will be coming into the season, after having won the ISL Shield last year after they finished on top of the table in the league stage of the league. Courtesy of finishing as table-toppers, they will be playing in the AFC Champions League this season, the first team from India to play in the tournament since the change in format.
ATK, who won the league last year, will be starting afresh following their merger with Mohun Bagan. They would have been the reigning champions but they were registered as a new club after the merger and hence, both Mohun Bagan and ATK will lose their respective previous records in their merged identity.
BFC will be hurting as they come into the season as for the first time in seven years of their existence, they didn’t win a trophy last season. Bengaluru lost 3-2 on aggregate to eventual champions ATK last season.
Mumbai City FC come into the season having ripped out FC Goa’s core that won them the ISL Shield. Mumbai, who were acquired by the City Group that owns Manchester City last season, have an extremely solid squad this season and will be going for the title.