Former I-League champions Chennai City FC has always had a reputation for picking a mix of foreign and local talents.
While the trio of Spards -- Pedro Manzi, Nestor Gordillo, and Roberto Eslava -- played a key role in their title-winning effort in 2018-19, the side from Tamil Nadu has roped in the services of a trio of Serbians to help their cause this time around.
Chennai has signed defender Elvedin Skrijelj, midfielder Vladimir Molerovic, and forward Demir Avdic to bolster their squad for the upcoming showpiece event.
Having arrived in Kolkata for the 2020-21 season of the I-League, forward Avdic said that it did not take him much time to accept an offer from India.
"When I received the invitation to be part of the Chennai City team, I accepted without much thought. With the desire to meet a new continent, a new culture, a new way of life, thinking, new temperaments, I think it is a great experience in the life of a man. It is something I will tell the children," the I-League website quoted Avdic as saying.
Indian football has moved forward together in the last few years, and defender Elvedin Skrijelj has been impressed with the talented players on show in the subcontinent.
"The football we played back home in Serbia was of high quality. But when I came to India, I saw that there are a lot of talented young players here too. We will all try to help each other and work towards the collective goal," said Skrijelj
Midfielder Molerovic has also been impressed with the level of football played in India, though he did feel that it would take some effort to acclimatise to the local conditions.
"Football here in India is at a high level, similar to what we have in Serbia. There are some very good players here," said Molerovic.
"But, obviously, there are a few differences in terms of climate and culture and food. But as a player, we all need to adjust to that and make the best possible result. We are professionals and we are ready to adapt to all the challenges that await us," he added.
The I-League 2020-21, slated to begin from January 9, will be played within a bio-secure bubble, keeping in mind the safety of the players and officials. I-League debutants Sudeva Delhi FC and Mohammedan SC will lock horns in the opening game of the season which gets underway in Kolkata.
( With inputs from ANI )
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