ISL 2020-21: Who are SC East Bengal's foreign players?

SC East Bengal head coach Robbie Fowler has brought in numerous players with a large English-league influence for Indian Super League (ISL 2020-21) season.

Jacques Maghoma

Congolese footballer Jacques Maghoma will be a vital cog in SC East Bengal's midfield this season.   -  GETTY IMAGES

Indian Super League (ISL) debutant SC East Bengal will gets its ISL 2020-21 season underway with the Kolkata Derby against fellow newcomer ATK-Mohun Bagan at the Tilak Maidan on November 27.

Ahead of the seventh edition of the league, which will be held across three stadiums in Goa owing to the coronavirus pandemic, head coach Robbie Fowler, a former Liverpool legend, brought in numerous players with a large English-league influence.

As per the All India Football Federation's rules, ISL clubs can have seven overseas players in their squad, but the legacy-rich club decided to get only six foreign nationals on boarrd.

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Here's a look at the foreigners in SC East Bengal team.

1) Daniel Fox

English born Scottish footballer Daniel Fox will lead the Fowler-managed side in its maiden ISL appearance. Fox was named captain by the club just days before its opening encounter against ATKMB.

The defender comes to India's cash-rich league with heaps of experience in the English professional circuit. He began his youth career at Everton in 2003 before moving to Walsall a year later.

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Over the course of 15 years, the 34-year-old has plied his trade in major English clubs like Burnley, Southampton, Nottingham Forest and Wigan Athletic. All in all, Fox featured in 37 Premier League games and 14 FA Cup matches. The lanky defender also represented Celtic in the Scottish Premiership between 2009 and 2010.

Fox donned the U-21 England colours in 2008 before moving to Scotland, where he made his debut against Wales in November 2009.

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2) Scott Neville

Two players in the current EB squad followed Fowler from A-League to ISL over the 2020 summer. One of them is Australian right-back Scott Neville.

Neville, son of former English Football League pro Steve Neville, began his youth career at Perth's Football West National Training Centre (FW WTC). He then turned professional in 2006, when he first played for Sorrento.

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Until the culmination of the last season, the right-back served numerous spells with Australian clubs like Perth Glory, Newcastle Jets and Western Sydney Wanderers. After spending a year with A-League club Brisbane Roar, the 31-year-old player signed a loan deal with EB. This will be the Aussie's first stint outside the home turf.

Neville also donned the Olyroos, the Australian national U-23 team, jersey in 2010. He played five games for the side that year. 

3) Aaron Amadi-Holloway

Welsh footballer Aaron Amadi-Holloway is the other Brisbane Roar player who has reunited with Fowler at East Begal. Holloway has relocated after spending a year in Australia.

Twenty-seven-year-old Holloway started his professional career at Bristol City in 2011. Since then, he has served short spells at Newport County, Wycombe Wanderers, Oldham Athletic, Fleetwood Town and Shrewsbury Town.

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The Welsh striker has also played for the U-17 and U-19 national sides, including taking part in the UEFA U19 Championship qualifiers in 2011 and 2012.

Holloway will have the likes of Jeje Lalpekhlua, Balwant Singh and CK Vineeth for company in the final third.

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4) Anthony Pilkington

Ireland's Anthony Pilkington has moved to base to India on the back valuable English Premier League (EPL) experience. Pilkington has played 75 EPL, 17 FA Cup and 14 EFL Cup matches.

The winger began his youth career with Preston North End in 2003 and a year later, he went on to feature for the Manchester United youth side. He turned professional in 2005 by signing for Blackburn Rovers.

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In the last 15 years, the 32-year-old has represented various famous clubs like Huddersfield Town, Norwich City, Cardiff City and Wigan Athletic.

The Blackburn-born winger is a mainstay of the Irish national team. After donning the U-21 national team jersey in 2008, he was promoted to the senior side in 2013. In January, he made his debut against Poland in a friendly and since then, he has played nine matches and netted one goal for the country.

5) Jacques Maghoma

Congolese footballer Jacques Maghoma will be a vital cog in EB's midfield. Maghoma began his career with the Tottenham Hotspur youth club in 2003. Five years later, he was promoted the senior side but didn't get a single game. The following year, he signed with Burton Albion.

After a four-year stint with Burton, the 33-year-old shifted to Sheffield Wednesday, featuring in 57 games over the next two seasons. In 2015, Birmingham City secured the services of the Congolese midfielder before EB roped him in over the 2020 summer.

Jacques Maghoma

Congolese footballer Jacques Maghoma will be a vital cog in SC East Bengal's midfield this season.   -  GETTY IMAGES

 

Zaire-born Maghoma is a regular member of DR Congo's national team. He made his debut in 2010, when he came on as a substitute against Saudi Arabia. Maghoma has played 25 matches for DR Congo since.

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6) Matti Steinmann

German Matti Steinmann joined the club on September 18, 2020. Steinmann is a youth exponent from Hamburger SV. He made his Bundesliga debut against Bayern Munich in September, 2014 when he came on as a substitute in the side's 0-0 home draw.

The midfielder, in the last eight years, has represented the Hamburger SV and FSV Mainz's second team. In January, 2019, he was loaned out to Danish Superliga club Vendyssel FF.

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Later in August that year, he put pen to paper for A-League club Wellington Phoenix.

The 25-year-old has plenty of youth national team experience under his belt. He has donned the Germany U-15, U-16, U-17 and U-20 jerseys between 2010 and 2015.

ISL 2020 will be televised live on Star Sports and live streamed on Disney+Hotstar.