Goal takes a look at the career of former Lyon defender Bakary Kone…
Kerala Blasters reinforced their defence in the summer by adding two foreign centre-backs. Bakary Kone from Burkina Faso is one of them and he arrives with plenty of domestic and continental football experience.
The 32-year-old retuning to full fitness during the pre-season will be crucial to Kibu Vicuna’s plans, especially since he has not played many games recently at his previous club.
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Kone, who joined Blasters from Russian club Arsenal Tula, started out at local club Abidjan and went onto make his professional career debut for Ouagadougou-based club Etoile Filante.
A Career Made In France
Kone left his boyhood club to step into the world of French football in 2006. After two years with the reserve side of Guingamp, he made his first-team debut in 2008 in Ligue 2. After three and a half seasons with Guingamp, Kone was brought on board by popular Ligue 1 club Olympique Lyonnais also known as Lyon. He played alongside the likes of Dejan Lovren, Anthony Martial, Alexandre Lacazette, Samuel Umtiti, Nabil Fekir and more.
He soon became a first-team regular there and remained so for many years until the 2015-16 season during which he suffered due to injuries and form. In 2016, he joined La Liga club Malaga, bringing his four-year association with the two-time Coupe de France winners to an end.
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Kone only managed to play seven league games for Malaga before succumbing to an injury and ending up being transferred. Ligue 1 turned out to be another lifeline for Kone as the defender joined Strasbourg on a season-long loan and played 28 league matches during the 2017-18 season. Of those 28, 27 were starts.
Upon the completion of his loan deal, he terminated the three-year contract he had with Malaga and joined Turkish club Ankaragucu. The Burkina Faso international scored an own goal on his debut for Ankaragucu as they succumbed 3-1 to Galatasaray in a Turkish Super Lig clash.
He ended up playing 14 league games for the Turkish club and switched to the Russian Premier League in the second half of the 2018-19 season.
Bakary Kone is one of the most capped footballers of the Burkina Faso national team. He made his debut at the age of 19 and was the runners up at the 2013 African Cup of Nations held at South Africa. He last played for the country in 2017.
Kone joined Arsenal Tula in the first half of 2019 but failed to get into the head coach’s first-team plans. He made just one league appearance for the club before making a move to India.