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ISL 2019: 'Messi' coming to Kerala Blasters this season!

The Week 2019-08-24 00:00:00
(File) Fans of Kerala Blasters at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Kochi

Shocked? Before football fans do a double take, here's the truth. It's not Argentina football great Lionel Messi but Cameroonian striker Raphaël Éric Messi Bouli who is coming to play for Kerala Blasters in the Indian Super League 2019!

Raphaël Messi, 27, has also represented Cameroon at the national level in 2013, 2017 and 2018.

“Looks like there's a new Messi in town

Welcome to the KBFC Family, Raphael Messi Bouli! #SwagathamMessi #KeralaBlasters,” the Kerala-based club tweeted.

The striker started his professional career with FAP Yaounde in 2013 and has appeared for YB Funde, Foolad, APEJES and Canon Yaoundé. Raphaël Messi scored 14 goals in 24 league matches, helping APEJES Academy win the 2016 Cameroonian cup.

Raphaël Messi has also played in China and Iran.

At Kerala Blasters, he will partner Nigerian forward Bartholomew Ogbeche. Raphaël Messi plays on the left wing well, according to head coach Eelco Schattorie.

The striker was, reportedly, thrilled to be part of a club with a strong vision and the most passionate fan-base, and that he would put in his best this season for the Kerala Blasters.