When the Indian Super League (ISL) season kicks off later on Tuesday, Hyderabad Football Club (HFC) will be looking to finish in the top four, while Chennaiyin Football Club will be expecting to forget over last season's poor performance and emerge as title contenders.
Last season, Hyderabad FC nearly missed out on a top-four position, while Chennaiyin FC plummeted to eighth place after a high of a top-four finish in the 2019/20 season.
Manolo Marquez, the Spanish coach of Hyderabad FC, had a significant impact on the team's success last season, ensuring a swift turnaround from the 2019/20 season, when they finished last in the table, to sixth last season.
Last season, Hyderabad FC finished with 29 points, two points less than fourth-placed FC Goa. Last season, the team recorded the joint-highest number of draws in the league, with 11, and they will be trying to turn those results into victories this season.
Chennaiyin FC, headed by Csaba Laszlo, failed to repeat their success from the previous season, placing eighth with just 20 points. They were generally competent in defence, but struggled in the final third, scoring only 17 goals, the fewest in the league. Chennaiyin also had 11 draws, which was tied with most in the league.