Welcome to the race for the end of season awards. Now that we are entering the closing stages to a brilliant ISL season, the end of season awards ceremony is quickly approaching and I am sure some of the awards will be decided on the last day of the season. Obviously, the big ones are Golden Boot and Golden Glove, but I will also be exploring some different ones, mainly to please Jake and keep the piece quite long…
The race for the Golden Boot is closely fought between two strikers, with a few outsiders who could take them by surprise and pip them at the finish line. The race is currently being won by Goa striker Coro. He currently, at the time of writing, has fifteen goals in sixteen games, nearly averaging a goal, a game. His closest opponent is Bengaluru hitman Miku who has thirteen goals in sixteen games, once again that isn’t bad at all.
Now onto the so-called outsiders in the race. Two of them are currently on the same total, these two are Delhi’s star man Kalu Uche and the ever-reliant Bengaluru marksman Sunil Chhetri and they both have ten goals this season. Uche is running out of games and may just fall short of the mark but Chhetri has a great chance of catching his teammate and Coro.
Now the ISL do the award differently, usually the Golden Glove award goes to the keeper with the most clean sheets during the season or tournament. However, the ISL award the keeper with the best minutes per goal. So, for the sake of keeping it to the official award, I will do a separate clean sheet award later on.
The keeper that is currently winning this is Jamshedpur shot-stopper, Subrata Paul. He has been fantastic this season and his team’s defensive performances have helped him to conceding a goal every one-hundred and two minutes. That’s less than a goal a game, which is extremely impressive.
He is closely followed by Bengaluru’s keeper Gurpreet Singh who has been fantastic for Bengaluru this season and tends to be forgotten about because of Bengaluru’s dominant attacking displays. He concedes a goal every 99.69 minutes, which is also under a goal a game. He will be hoping they manage another couple of clean sheets in the play-offs so he can pip Paul to the Golden Glove award.
Most Assists (Golden Ball):
This award is the closest fought award in the league and to me the most important. I know goals win you games, but I love seeing someone getting recognition for being a fantastic set-up artist. The leader of this award is currently Marcelinho of Pune City. He currently has seven assists in fifteen games, and with Pune qualifying for the play-offs, he will be looking to get ahead of the pack that is right behind him.
There are four players all joint second with five assists. These are Bengaluru’s Edu Garcia, Goa’s Lanzarote, Mumbai’s Everton Santos and Kerala’s Courage Pekuson. Interestingly, Edu Garcia won’t be able to add to his tally as he left Bengaluru for China at the end of last week. That’s a massive blow, by the way, for Bengaluru as he was a regular in the side. I can definitely see Lanzarote giving Marcelinho a run for his money, especially if Goa were to qualify for the playoffs.
Behind them, you also have six players on four assists. Some of these are Toni Dovale, Udanta Singh and lead goalscorer Coro. What an achievement it would be for Coro to go and win both Golden Boot and Golden Ball in the same season.
Most Clean Sheets (Traditional Golden Glove):
It makes sense that Jamshedpur’s Subrata Paul is also winning the race for this award, he has seven clean sheets this season and he is hoping he can add to that if his team qualify for the playoffs. There are two keepers just behind him on six clean sheets. These are Vishal Kaith of Pune and Karanjit Singh of Chennaiyin. Both can easily catch and beat Paul to the traditional Golden Glove award.
There are also two keepers on five clean sheets for the season and they can easily catch if Paul. These are Paul Rachubka of Kerala and Gurpreet Singh of topside Bengaluru. Both these keepers can easily catch Paul, especially Singh as Bengaluru have confirmed their place in the playoffs.
Obviously, there are thousands of stats for the ISL this season and we could easily give out an award for each of them, but for time’s sake and my sanity, I’ll just quickly give my honourable mentions.
Seiminlen Doungel and Lalruatthara are the dirtiest players in the league this season, having committed forty fouls. Sixteen players have been red carded this season and I am sure no one wants to get their second and actually win that award.
Staying on the topic of cards, Chennaiyin’s Dhanpal Ganesh has the most yellow cards, receiving eight in fourteen games. He is closely followed by Nemanja Lakic-Pesic and Henrique Sereno, who are both on seven.
Ahmed Jahouh of Goa is running away with most passes so far, passing the ball 1290 times this season. His teammate Edu Bedia is the closest to him on 1039 passes. Tiri of Jamshedpur has made the most interceptions, with twenty-eight. He is closely followed by Ahmed Jahouh who is on twenty-seven and Paulinho Dias of Delhi, who is on twenty-six.
That’s where I am ending it today as I think I have seen enough stats in the past forty minutes to last me my whole life. Although, I am a massive stats fan so it’s been enjoyable. Most of the races for the awards will definitely go down to the very last game and It will be interesting to see if Coro can hold onto that Golden Boot award.