2018–19 I-League

The 2018–19 I-League was the 12th season of the I-League, the top Indian professional football league, since its establishment in 2007. The season started on 26 October 2018 and is scheduled to conclude in March 2019.[1] Unlike the Indian Super League, the I-League did not take a mid-season break during the 2019 AFC Asian Cup.[1]

I-League
Season2018–19
ChampionsChennai City
1st I-League title
1st Indian title
RelegatedShillong Lajong
AFC Champions LeagueChennai City
Matches played109
Goals scored303 (2.78 per match)
Top goalscorerPedro Manzi
Willis Plaza
(21 goals)
Biggest home winReal Kashmir 6–1 Shillong Lajong
(11 December 2018) Chennai City 6–1 Shillong Lajong
(29 December 2018)
East Bengal 5-0 Shillong Lajong
(14 February 2019)
Biggest away winMohun Bagan 0–3 Churchill Brothers
(25 November 2018) Shillong Lajong 0–3 Indian Arrows
(13 January 2019)
Highest scoringReal Kashmir 6–1 Shillong Lajong
(11 December 2018) Chennai City 6–1 Shillong Lajong
(29 December 2018) Chennai City 4–3 Aizawl
(18 January 2019)
Longest winning runChennai City, East Bengal
(4 games)
Longest unbeaten runReal Kashmir (13 games)
Longest winless runShillong Lajong (11 games)
Longest losing runShillong Lajong (5 games)
Highest attendance64,867
East Bengal 3–2 Mohun Bagan
(16 December 2018)
Lowest attendance100
Indian Arrows 0–2 Chennai City
(8 February 2019)
Total attendance1,114,349
Average attendance10,223
All statistics correct as of 9 March 2019.

Minerva Punjab was the defending champions having won the previous season. Real Kashmir joined as a promoted club from the I-League 2nd Division. Churchill Brothers, having been relegated the previous season, were given an exemption by the All India Football Federation for this season.

Chennai City FC were the champions for this season, winning the title on the last day. This was their first title win in the history of the club. The top scorer in the league was Chennai City FC’s Pedro Manzi, who finished the season with 21 goals.[2]

TeamsEdit

Stadiums and locationsEdit

Team City/State Stadium Capacity
Aizawl Aizawl, Mizoram Rajiv Gandhi Stadium 25,000
Chennai City Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium 35,000
Churchill Brothers Vasco da Gama, Goa Tilak Maidan Stadium 15,000
East Bengal Kolkata, West Bengal Salt Lake Stadium 85,000
Gokulam Kerala Kozhikode, Kerala EMS Stadium 80,000
Indian Arrows Cuttack, Odisha
Bhubaneswar, Odisha
Barabati Stadium
Kalinga Stadium
60,000
30,000
Minerva Punjab Panchkula, Chandigarh Tau Devi Lal Stadium 15,000
Mohun Bagan Kolkata, West Bengal Salt Lake Stadium 85,000
NEROCA Imphal, Manipur Khuman Lampak Main Stadium 40,000
Real Kashmir Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir TRC Turf Ground 15,000
Shillong Lajong Shillong, Meghalaya Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium 35,000

Personnel and sponsorshipEdit

Team Head coach Kit manufacturer Shirt sponsor
Aizawl   Stanley Rozario Vamos NECS Limited
Chennai City   Akbar Nawas Penalty Nippon Paint
Churchill Brothers   Petre Gigiu Nivia Churchill Group
East Bengal   Alejandro Menéndez Perf Quess Corp
Gokulam Kerala   Gift Raikhan Kaizen Aqualine
Indian Arrows   Floyd Pinto Nike Hero
Minerva Punjab   Sachin Badadhe Astro Apollo Tyres
Mohun Bagan   Khalid Jamil Shiv Naresh None
NEROCA   Manuel Retamero Fraile Sqad Gear Classic Group
Real Kashmir   David Robertson Adidas J&K Bank
Shillong Lajong   Alison Kharsyntiew Lotto McDowell's No.1

Head coaching changesEdit

Team Outgoing coach Manner of departure Position in table Incoming coach Date of appointment
Chennai City   V. Soundararajan Contract finished Pre-season   Akbar Nawas 20 March 2018[3]
Aizawl   Santosh Kashyap Contract finished   Gift Raikhan 6 June 2018[4]
NEROCA   Gift Raikhan Contract finished   Manuel Retamero Fraile 6 July 2018[5]
Indian Arrows   Luís Norton de Matos Contract finished   Floyd Pinto 25 July 2018[6]
Minerva Punjab   Khogen Singh Contract finished   Paul Munster 9 August 2018[7]
East Bengal   Khalid Jamil Mutual consent   Alejandro Menéndez 20 August 2018[8]
Mohun Bagan   Sankarlal Chakraborty Resigned 6th(11 game in)   Khalid Jamil 7 January 2019[9]
Aizawl   Gift Raikhan Resigned 10th(11 game in)   Stanley Rozario 9 January 2019
Minerva Punjab   Paul Munster Resigned 9th(16 game in)   Sachin Badadhe(interim) 12 February 2019
Gokulam Kerala   Bino George Move To Technical Director 10th(18 game in)   Gift Raikhan 28 February 2019

Foreign playersEdit

On 20 June 2018, it was decided by the All India Football Federation that the number of foreigners for each I-League club will be kept six as previous season. Asian player quota is abolished. Clubs can sign maximum six players of any nationality.[10]

Indian Arrows cannot sign any foreign players as they are the AIFF developmental team.

Club Foreigner 1 Foreigner 2 Foreigner 3 Foreigner 4 Foreigner 5 Foreigner 6
Aizawl   Léonce Dodoz   Alfred Jaryan   Ansumana Kromah   Kareem Omolaja   Richard Kasagga
Chennai City   Mauro Boerchio   Jozef Kapláň   Roberto Eslava   Néstor Gordillo   Pedro Manzi   Sandro Rodríguez
Churchill Brothers   Nenad Novakovic   Lorougnon Christ Remi   Hussein Eldor   Willis Plaza   Anthony Wolfe   Khalid Aucho
East Bengal   Jhonny Acosta   Enrique Esqueda   Kassim Aidara   Toni Dovale   Borja Gómez Pérez   Jaime Santos
Gokulam Kerala   Daniel Addo   Fabien Vorbe   Ejiogu Emmanual   Andre Ettienne   Marcus Joseph
Minerva Punjab   Jorge Caceido   Kalif Alhassan   Juan Quero   Mahmoud Amnah   Roland Bilala
Mohun Bagan   Aser Pierrick Dipanda   Omar Elhussieny   Sony Norde   Yuta Kinowaki   Kingsley Obumneme   Henry Kisekka
NEROCA   Aryn Williams   Chencho Gyeltshen   Eduardo Ferreira   Katsumi Yusa   Varney Kallon   Felix Chidi Odili
Real Kashmir   Abednego Tetteh   Bazie Armand   Gnohere Krizo   Loveday Enyinnaya   Mason Robertson   Aaron Katebe
Shillong Lajong

League tableEdit

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification or relegation
1 Chennai City (C) 20 13 4 3 48 28 +20 43 Qualification for AFC Champions League preliminary round 1[a]
2 East Bengal 20 13 3 4 37 20 +17 42
3 Real Kashmir 20 10 7 3 25 14 +11 37[b]
4 Churchill Brothers 20 9 7 4 35 23 +12 34
5 Mohun Bagan 20 8 5 7 27 28 −1 29
6 NEROCA 20 7 5 8 27 26 +1 26
7 Aizawl 20 6 6 8 27 28 −1 24
8 Indian Arrows 20 6 3 11 19 28 −9 21
9 Minerva Punjab 20 4 6 10 10 19 −9 18[b]
10 Gokulam Kerala 20 3 8 9 25 33 −8 17
11 Shillong Lajong (R) 20 3 2 15 23 56 −33 11 Relegation to I-League 2nd Division (withdrew)
Source: I-league
Rules for classification: 1) points; 2) head-to-head points; 3) head-to-head goal difference; 4) goal difference; 5) number of goals scored; 6) drawing of lots
(C) Champion; (R) Relegated
Notes:
  1. ^ If the league champions cannot qualify for the AFC Champions League group stage, they will enter the AFC Cup group stage.
  2. ^ a b The game between Minerva Punjab and Real Kashmir was rescheduled, but eventually it was not played and both teams were awarded a point.[11]

ResultsEdit

Home \ Away AFC CHE CHU EAB GOK INA MIN MOH NER REK SHI
Aizawl 1–2 2–1 3–2 3–2 0–1 1–2 1–2 0–0 0–0 4–1
Chennai City 4–3 2–2 2–1 3–2 4–1 3–1 3–1 2–1 0–1 6–1
Churchill Brothers 4–1 3–2 1–2 3–1 2–1 2–0 1–1 2–1 1–1 4–2
East Bengal 1–1 1–2 1–1 3–1 1–0 0–1 3–2 2–1 1–1 5–0
Gokulam Kerala 1–3 2–3 1–1 1–2 1–1 1–0 1–1 2–1 1–1 3–1
Indian Arrows 0–0 0–2 0–1 1–2 1–0 2–1 0–2 2–3 2–2 1–0
Minerva Punjab 0–1 0–0 0–0 0–1 1–1 1–0 0–1 1–0 0–1 0–1
Mohun Bagan 2–2 1–1 0–3 0–2 2–2 1–3 2–0 1–0 1–2 2–0
NEROCA 0–0 3–3 2–1 0–2 1–1 3–0 0–0 2–1 2–3 3–2
Real Kashmir 1–0 1–0 0–0 1–2 1–0 2–0 [a] 0–1 0–2 6–1
Shillong Lajong 2–1 2–4 3–2 1–3 1–1 0–3 2–2 2–3 1–2 0–1
Updated to match(es) played on 13 April 2019. Source: I-League
Legend: Blue = home team win; Yellow = draw; Red = away team win.
Notes:
  1. ^ Both teams agreed to share one point each. Match was abandoned because of security issue.[12]

Season statisticsEdit

ScoringEdit

As of 9 March 2019[13]

Hat-tricksEdit

Player For Against Result Date Ref
  Pedro Manzi Chennai City Indian Arrows 4–1 (H) 26 October 2018 [14]
  Willis Plaza Churchill Brothers Shillong Lajong 4–2 (H) 15 November 2018 [15]
  Pedro Manzi Chennai City Shillong Lajong 6–1 (H) 29 December 2018 [16]
  Pedro Manzi Chennai City Gokulam Kerala 3–2 (H) 4 January 2019 [17]
  Pedro Manzi Chennai City NEROCA 3–3 (A) 11 February 2019 [18]
  Laldanmawia Ralte East Bengal Shillong Lajong 5–0 (H) 14 February 2019 [19]

CleansheetsEdit

As of 9 March 2019
Rank Player Club Clean
sheets
1   Bilal Khan Real Kashmir 9
2   James Kithan Churchill Brothers 5
  Prabhsukhan Singh Gill Indian Arrows
  Rakshit Dagar East Bengal
5   Shilton Paul Mohun Bagan 4
6   Bhaskar Roy Minerva Punjab 3
  Lalit Thapa NEROCA
  Lalawmpuia Aizawl
9   Nauzet Santana Chennai City 2
  Mauro Boerchio NEROCA
  Arshdeep Singh Minerva Punjab
  Shankar Roy Mohun Bagan
  Gurpreet Singh Chabal Aizawl

Average home attendancesEdit

As of 9 March 2019[20][21]