The DEN Networks established their foot hold in the footballing business after launching their team for the Indian Soccer League, which is to be held later this year. The franchise was named ‘Delhi Dynamos’ which captures the true essence, robustness, diversity and the raw energy of the city it represents.
The Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium which played as the main venue for Commonwealth games in 2010 and also witnessed the India vs Bayern Munich tie, will play host to the Delhi side. The stadium has more than 60,000 seating capacity and a brand new world class pitch has already been injected into the premises.
The Delhi based Club have already started focusing on the international tie ups and have subsequently tied up with Dutch giants Feyenoord FC. Feyenoord is one of the two top dogs in dutch football, amassing a mammoth 14 Eredivise titles, one European cup, two UEFA cups and one Intercontinental Cup. The DEN owners have played a trump card by getting tied up with a team having much European and Domestic Pedigree. Moreover as a part of alliance, the Rotterdam based club will share its massive wealth of footballing knowledge with the Franchisee.
The club have already made progress in assembling the team and the back room staff, starting with marquee manager, Harm Van Veldhoven. Harm Van Veldhoven started his playing career with local youth team De Raven, he reached the pinnacle of his career with SK Lommel, wherein he made 213 appearances and bagged 13 goals. After retiring, he applied his trade as an assistant manager and it took him just an year to evolve into a manager of SK Lommel. Since then Veldhoven has belted more than 13years of experience, mainly divided between the Dutch Eredivise and the Belgian Pro League. In his stride, he has also managed six different clubs, winning second division championships both with SK Lommel and FC Brussels.
The newly found franchisee ,also took part in a two day Indian Super League Drafting system, wherein 14players were signed by the club, including the likes of Manandeep Singh and Francis Fernandes. With two foreign players already signed by the club, we take a look at every department of the Delhi-based franchisee.
Goalkeeper – Jagroop Singh
With the club missing on Subrata Paul and Sandeep Nandy, Jagroop Singh was just the guy to go for. The 23year old has earned huge praises by some of the top coaches in the country like, Desmond Bulpin. Since his induction after being scouted from his State team, Jagroop has been a solid goalkeeper having a conventional style of keeping. His first season with I league club Indian arrows, earned him 25starts out of 26games. Moreover the Punjab born player has gone out to represent India at both the U-19 and the U-23 levels. Still at a mere age of 23, Jagroop is a raw talent at hand, which still needs to be cut and polished into a diamond.
Defenders – Shouvik Ghosh, Munmun Lugun, Robert Lalthamuana, Naoba Singh, Govin Singh and Anwar Ali.
The Delhi Dynamos has assembled a defense line with class, experience and youth. Veterans like Robert Lalthamuana, Naoba Singh, Govin Singh and Anwar Ali provide the much needed cover used to develop and harness youth players such as Shouvik Ghosh and Munmun Lugun. In Robert, the Delhi based franchisee has signed one of the most consistent left backs in the I league. He has also been instrumental for his club side East Bengal. With Naoba Singh comes experience, at just 26, Naoba has played for the Indian National team, more-so than the 2009 SAFF Cup which saw India in on penalties. Representing East Bengal FC, Naoba is one of the most ‘tough to beat defenders’ in the I-league. Anwar Ali is one of the most exciting defenders, his prowess and skill with the head, his big imposing body and his heading capabilities has been a nightmare for attackers. The 29year old has over 10years of experience in which he has represented India and played for I league giants such as Mohun Bagan and Dempo. At just 21, both Shouvik Ghosh and Munmun Lugun have a lot to learn, with the former bagging some solid performance ever since his signing to Mohun Bagan and the latter earning praise for his un-tired running. There is already some chemistry between Robert Lalthamuana and Naoba Singh, which the Delhi based side will emphasize to harness. In a tactical move, the Den owned club has signed a crop of players which will continue to grow and develop over time.
Midfielders – Shouvik Chakraborty, Franics Fernandes, Shylo Malswamtluanga, Adil Khan, Manish Bhargav and Steven Dias
Much like the defense the Dynamos has insisted upon a Midfield mixed a blend of youth and highlighted by a streak of experience. Youth products such as Shouvik Chakraborty and Manish Bhargav are some of the top talents in the country. Signed by Mohun Bagan, both have played their role and delivered top notch performances whenever they are called upon. Shylo Malswamtluanga and Adil Khan both known for their tired-less running will provide the much needed cover for the defense. Both the players are well versed with the Indian Game and have 20 years of experience between them. With ,Franics Fernandes and Steven Dias comes some of the most exciting wingers in the I- league. Both are known for their mesmerizing play and their accuracy for delivering pin point crosses, with the latter even dubbed as the ‘David Beckham of India’. These two have been the most consistent performers in the I-league. It is clear that these two will be the fulcrum of the team and deliver quality ball inside the 6-yard region for attackers who excel in aerial capabilities to strive upon.
Attackers – Mads Junker, Morten Skoubo and Manandeep Singh
Mad Junker has been one of the most prolific and experienced strikers of Danish Football. Belting a massive 391 appearances in career spread over eight teams including the likes of Vitesse and FC Norjaeslland , and almost 15 years, also finding the goal in almost a 150 occasions. Morten Skoubo started his playing career with Midtjylland in 1999, three glorious seasons in which he scored 24times in 54 appearances, saw him move to German side Borussia M’gladbach. His playing career like Junker, spreads over 15years in which he has belted close to 250 appearances and has found the net 80times. The Danish target man is known for his physicality and heading prowess which makes him a target man for crosses to thrive upon. Much like his compatriots, Manandeep Singh, though young, is known for his goal scoring prowess. His 9 goals in 18games with Air India, which won him the coveted FPAI Young Player of the Year, clearly shows the talent the Hisar-born player has. In the company of some of the most experienced players like Junker and Skoubo, Manandeep will surely develop into a more complete player.
The Delhi Dynamos have some of the best strikers around to operate in a system which will focus on crosses from the flanks. The most favourable scenario being Dias launching a pin point cross for Skoubo, Skouno holding it up and playing a decisive defense splitting pass for either Manandeep or Junker to find the net with a cheeky little finish.
With still six slots remaining for foreign players, Delhi Dynamos are one of the dark horses and surprise packages in this years ISL. The club emphasizes on a long term success plan which would help in the ‘overall development’ of the team and the technical staff. Its affiliation with Feyenoord reflects the fact that the franchisee wants to develop world class players and ,with them in their ranks achieve the much coveted prize. Perhaps the Dutch masters are one of the best talent builders and promoters in the modern world, with more than 12 Feyenoord trained players participating in the world cup, including the likes of Robin Van Persie, this year. It is no less than a challenge to awaken the ‘sleeping giant’, but surely the dutch masters with their wealth of knowledge can develop a strategem to wake the giant and perhaps evolve them into world class players. The Aim is already clear, to revolutionize and usher football in Delhi and give Delhi a team which plays beautiful passing and ethical football.