From Marko Lešković to Álvaro Vázquez – Profiling the foreign contingent of Kerala Blasters FC

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Introduction

With the signing of Marko Lešković, the foreign contingent of Kerala Blasters FC has fully been revamped for the new reign under the Serb gaffer, Ivan Vukomanović. The club will now have the services of Marko Lešković (Croatian), Enes Sipović (Bosnian), Chencho Gyeltshen (Bhutanese), Adrián Luna (Uruguayan), Jorge Díaz (Argentine), and Álvaro Vázquez (Spanish) for the upcoming iteration of the Indian Super League.

Kerala Blasters has had forgettable seasons for the past few years now. The admiration and approbation that the club had acquired under the reigns of David James and Steve Coppell haven’t been replicated for quite some time now. To speak of the last season under Kibu Vicuña, Kerala Blasters registered three wins; eight draws and nine losses, and finished at the tenth position out of eleven.

From Marko Lešković to Álvaro Vázquez – Profiling the foreign contingent of Kerala Blasters FC Screenshot 2021 09 18 11 59 34 18
Source – Kerala Blasters Instagram

Kerala Blasters has now brought in Ivan Vukomanović at the helm, and along with him are Patrick Van Kets (assistant manager), Slaven Progovecki (goalkeeping coach), and Werner Martens (strength and conditioning coach), with a strong intent to finish at the top four for this season. Ishfaq Ahmed will continue to provide his services for the following season as well.

Now let’s jump into profiling the foreign player contingent of Kerala Blasters FC.

1. Marko Lešković

Marko Lešković will deploy as the left centre-back for Kerala Blasters for the upcoming season.

From Marko Lešković to Álvaro Vázquez – Profiling the foreign contingent of Kerala Blasters FC Screenshot 2021 09 18 11 46 06 89
Source – Kerala Blasters Instagram

Marko plied his trade mostly for the Croatian top-flight (Prva HNL) league’s NK Lokomotiva, being on loan from GNK Dinamo Zagreb in his previous season. Marko played 17 matches for NK Lokomotiva, and he was seen playing the full 90 minutes for all the matches (registering a goal to his name), albeit in one match, he was sent off during the injury time given after 90 minutes. He was also seen playing for Dinamo Zagreb in the Round of 16 of their domestic cup, Hrvatski nogometni kup (analogical to the formerly held Hero Super Cup), for 20 minutes. Marko Lešković also has a passing accuracy of 82% from the last season, along with 65 clearances and 135 interceptions. (Sources for the data – Wyscout and Transfermarkt).

Hence, it is safe to assume that Marko Lešković will be putting up a performance that is nothing short of his 100 per cent for Kerala Blasters, although this will be his first time playing for a club outside of Croatia. Dinamo Zagreb finished at the top of the table in their last season, whilst NK Lokomotiva finished eighth.

Marko Lešković
Marko Lešković

Marko Lešković has plied his trades for clubs such as Dinamo Zagreb, NK Lokomotiva, HNK Rijeka, NK Osijek, and so on. He also holds the experience of playing the UEFA Europa League, UEFA Europa and Champions League Qualifiers. He has played 220 matches in his whole career and contributed to 20 goals (scoring 16 and assisting four). Looking at the stats of Lešković from 2015/16 and after, Lešković has registered a passing accuracy of 88% with five goals and two assists in 91 matches. He also has 529 interceptions and 305 clearances to his name. (Sources – Wyscout and Transfermarkt).

Marko Lešković is a mobile player capable of carrying the ball forward and equally good at feeding long balls for transitioning into the attack. Since the Serb gaffer was seen implementing both of these techniques in his previous pre-season and Durand Cup matches, Marko will prove to be extremely useful for the coach. Marko Lešković will be filling in the gap whose onus was previously fulfilled by Costa Nhamoinesu for the Blasters.

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