Mumbai City FC won their first Indian Super League title when they beat ATK Mohun Bagan 2-1 in the final on Saturday.
The Islanders became the fourth different team to win the ISL title after ATK, Chennaiyin FC and Bengaluru FC. Mumbai City FC are also the first team from Mumbai to become national champions after 15 years since Mahindra United achieved the feat when they had triumphed in the 2005-’06 season.
It was also the first time since the opening edition that the two finalists were playing in their first finals. However, it’s important to note that a large part of the ATK Mohun Bagan squad was inherited from ATK’s title winning squad last year.
The 2020-21 campaign involved eleven teams with SC East Bengal joining the top tier league after submitting a successful bid to do so, thus making it the biggest ISL season ever with 115 matches being played in total.
The season was a lot different from previous ones as teams played at neutral venues behind closed doors with the players being kept in a bio-secure bubble for the entire duration of the competition.
It had both negative and positive impact on the league. Here are few key numbers from the 2020-’21 edition and what they tell us.
ISL 2020-21 (Teams statistics)
|Teams||Matches Played||Wins||Draws||Losses||Goals scored||Goals conceded||Clean Sheets|
|Mumbai City FC||23||13||6||4||39||21||10|
|ATK Mohun Bagan||23||13||5||5||32||19||10|
|SC East Bengal||20||3||8||9||22||33||3|
Mumbai City FC and ATK Mohun Bagan equaled the record for most number of points accumulated in a season set by Bengaluru FC in 2017-’18 season. However, the Blues record was better as the points tally was achieved despite playing two games fewer.
Both ATK Mohun Bagan and Mumbai City FC kept ten clean sheets. It’s for the first time in ISL history that two teams have had their clean sheet count in double figures. Only Bengaluru FC in 2019-’20 season kept ten or more clean sheets in a single season.
FC Goa set a new record for most number of draws in a single season as they were involved in a stalemate on 12 occasions.
Goals dry up
The 2020-’21 season may have seen more goals scored than any other season, but it was down to the season having more games than any previous campaign thanks to the addition of the eleventh team.
However, the goals per game ratio this season has dipped drastically from last season and it is the lowest since the 2016 season.
Only the 2016 and 2014 campaigns had a lesser goal per game ratio than the 2020-’21 campaign.
Goal comparison (All seasons)
|Season||Total goals scored||Goals per game|
|2020-21 (11 teams)||298||2.59|
|2016 (8 teams)||145||2.37|
|2015 (8 teams)||186||3.04|
|2014 (8 teams)||129||2.11|
Sunil Chhetri, still the best
Once again Sunil Chhetri was the top Indian goalscorer despite not being involved in the playoffs. With eight goals he was the only Indian among the top ten goalscorers this season. Manvir Singh and Bipin Singh were a close second with six goals apiece but they did not make the top ten.
The number of Indian goals and the percentage of Indian goals both saw a marginal increase but it isn’t enough to get Indian football fans excited.
Top ten goalscorers in 2019-20 ISL
|Rank||Player||Team||Matches Played||Goals Scored|
|1||Igor Angulo||FC Goa||21||14|
|2||Roy Krishna||ATK Mohun Bagan||23||14|
|3||Diego Mauricio||Odisha FC||20||12|
|4||Adam Le Fondre||Mumbai City FC||23||11|
|5||Aridane Santana||Hyderabad FC||18||10|
|6||Nerijus Valskis||Jamshedpur FC||18||8|
|7||Sunil Chhetri||Bengaluru FC||20||8|
|8||Bartholomew Ogbeche||Mumbai City FC||23||8|
|9||Cleiton Silva||Bengaluru FC||18||7|
|10||Jordan Murray||Kerala Blasters||19||7|
|Season||Goals scored by Indian players||Percentage of total goals scored|
Drop in creativity
The 2019-’20 season saw four Indians feature in among the top ten assist providers. That figure was down to just two this season. Odisha FC’s Jerry Mawihmingthanga who has supplied most assists by an Indian player is the only one from last year’s top ten to feature again in the list.
|1||Alberto Noguera||FC Goa||20||8|
|2||Roy Krishna||ATK Mohun Bagan||23||8|
|3||Hugo Boumous||Mumbai City FC||16||7|
|4||Federico Gallego||NorthEast United||16||6|
|5||Aitor Monroy||Jamshedpur FC||19||6|
|6||Jerry Mawihmingthanga||Odisha FC||17||5|
|7||Ahmed Jahouh||Mumbai City FC||20||5|
|8||Cleiton Silva||Bengaluru FC||18||4|
|9||Gary Hooper||Kerala Blasters||18||4|
|10||Alexander Jesuraj||FC Goa||21||4|
Similar style of play
If the numbers for passes, tackles and crosses are indicators, there wasn’t a lot of change in the playing styles that the teams adopted. There was a drop in the average passes per game but the average tackles per game and average crosses per game remained exactly the same as last season.
|Season||Average passes per game||Average tackles per game||Average crosses per game|
Disciplinary record improves
There was a significant improvement in the disciplinary record in the ISL this season as there were fewer red cards and yellow cards shown per game and minutes played compared to last season.
Only two previous ISL seasons had a better disciplinary record than the 2020-’21 campaign.
|Season||Number of red cards||Number of minutes per every red card shown|
|Season||Number of yellow cards||Average yellow cards per game|
Respond to this article with a post
Share your perspective on this article with a post on ScrollStack, and send it to your followers.