KOCHI: Iain Hume was preparing for another season with Kerala Blasters FC in the Indian Super League (ISL) when he was told that he was no longer wanted by the club. However, the ISL’s leading goalscorer did not have to wait too long to find a new suitor in FC Pune City with whom he is prepping for the tournament’s fifth edition.
“Blasters decided, after making promises to me, that they wanted to change the way they were going. This is the second time it has happened to me, first with ATK and now with Kerala. It’s not nice, but football is an unforgiving sport and a business. The club has moved on and so have I,” Hume said about his unceremonious exit from the Kochi-based franchise.
“In the note I wrote when I left, I wished them all the best and I hope they do well in the season. But I am a footballer and I want to play. And it was only common sense from my part that I decided to sign with Pune, a club that has wanted me for three years now,” Hume told Express on Wednesday.
However, the Canadian striker believes that the bond between him and Blasters fans is stronger than ever. “I still have a very good connection with the Kerala fans irrespective of what happened. I have made a lot of friends on and off the pitch back in Kerala,” said the 34-year-old attacker. Hume was recovering from a knee injury which he picked up in February that ruled him out for the latter parts of last season when he and Blasters parted ways. And he has been continuing his rehabilitation in Pune.
“I have never been injured like this in my career. So, I am listening to people who know about injuries and recoveries and I am getting better. I haven’t put a timeline to it, but the standard recovery time is eight months and it’s been six months now without any setbacks. Hopefully, I will be back in another couple of months or sooner,” said Hume.
Pune reached the playoffs in the 2017-18 ISL under Ranko Popovic and hope to go farther time around with former Delhi Dynamos head coach Miguel Portugal in charge. “My personal target, honestly, is to return to the pitch as fast as I can. We have some very good players here and I think we will be fighting for the title this season,” Hume said of his teammates which include Emiliano Alfaro and Marcelinho, two of the best forwards in ISL.