Joni Kauko follows Johnny Acosta - Players who have come to India after playing in a major international tournament - Happy Boss

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Saturday, 26 June 2021

Joni Kauko follows Johnny Acosta - Players who have come to India after playing in a major international tournament


Joni Kauke will play in the ISL in the upcoming season after plying his trade in the ongoing Euro 2020 with Finland..

Indian Super League (ISL) giants ATK Mohun Bagan are the busiest team in the Indian transfer market this summer.

The Kolkata club have already roped in top Indian names like Amrinder Singh, Ashutosh Mehta and Liston Colaco and have also signed promising youngsters like Bidyananda Singh and Phalguni Singh.

But the arrival of Finland international midfielder Joni Kauko has to be the biggest signing for the club so far. Kauko was a part of the Finland national team in the ongoing Euro 2020 where he played as a substitute in all three group stage matches.

But this is not the first time that a player will come to India immediately after playing in a major international competition.

From East Bengal's Johnny Acosta to Kerala Blasters' Kervens Belfort, here is a list of five such players.

#1 Johnny Acosta (Costa Rica)

In the summer of 2018, East Bengal announced the signing of Costa Rican defender Johnny Acosta who was fresh from taking part in the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

The Costa Rican international came to India with a vast experience of playing two World Cups (2014, 2018) and two Copa Americas (2011, 2016) for his country. He is one of the most high profile signings in the history of the I-League.

#2 Kostas Katsouranis (Greece)

Kostas Katsouranis was quite a familiar name among fans in India who had witnessed the fairytale story of Greece lifting the Euro Cup in 2004 as the underdogs.

Katsouranis was an important member of the Greek squad that stunned a star-studded Portuguese side in the final of the tournament.

The Greek midfielder at the twilight of his career came to India in 2014 joining FC Pune City for their maiden campaign in the inaugural ISL season. Katsouranis put pen on paper after playing the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

#3 Aaron Hughes (Northern Ireland)

The Kerala Blasters skipper and defender Aaron Hughes had guided his team to the final of the ISL in 2016, the second time in the club's history in three seasons.

Hughes, who appeared in 11 matches in the league that season, was a very popular name among the Blasters loyalists.

The Northern Ireland star signed for the South Indian outfit immediately after playing in the Euro 2016.

#4 Kervens Belfort (Haiti)

Like Aaron Hughes, another star player who joined Kerala Blasters in 2016 after playing a major international tournament is Haitian attacker Kervens Belfort.

The 29-year-old was fresh from playing in the Copa America Centenario in the USA before joining the Indian club. Belfort appeared in 15 ISL matches in that season and scored three goals.

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