The 10th edition of the Indian Super League is scheduled to commence on September 21, 2023, featuring an exciting Southern Derby clash between Kerala Blasters FC and Bengaluru FC.
The opening match of the new season will take place at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi, marking the kickoff of India’s premier domestic league.
This fixture is a rematch of last season’s semifinal, notorious for the KBFC walk-off incident. During that game, KBFC’s coach, Ivan Vukomanovic, directed his team to leave the field following a contentious goal by Sunil Chhetri, which he believed was taken before the referee’s decision. Consequently, the coach has faced disciplinary actions and received a 10-game suspension.
The defending champions, Mohun Bagan Super Giant, who recently secured the Durand Cup, appear to be the team to beat this season. They have strengthened their squad with high-quality foreign players like Jason Cummings and Armando Sadiku, in addition to retaining well-established Indian talents such as Anwar Ali, Anirudh Thapa, and Sahal Abdul Samad.
Juan Ferrando aims to sustain his successful tenure as head coach, while Des Buckingham, the manager of Mumbai City FC, aims to build on his outstanding previous season and contend for the championship. The Englishman is entering another year at the helm of the Islanders with hopes of securing silverware.
This season also welcomes Punjab FC to the top tier, following their impressive performance in the I-League, which earned them a promotion to the ISL. The newcomers are eager to make a strong debut.
Chennaiyiin FC has renewed its partnership with English manager Owen Coyle, who aspires to start the season on a positive note and build upon that foundation as the season progresses.