East Bengal Vs Mohun Bagan clash this weekend; all you need to know about Asia’s fiercest rivalry
The intense clash between East Bengal and Mohun Bagan has been voted as the best derby in Asia. The hate at the Old Firm derby between Celtic and Rangers are explicit, and the same can be said about Kolkata derby which has produced some classic games coupled with loathing from both parts of fanbases over the last 100 years.
These two will go head-to-head week at Salt Lake Stadium on Sunday in what might promise to be a compelling game. Both the teams will be taking up the pitch in the hope of securing all three points on December 16.
SUPERIOR SUPPORT AND RIVALRY:
This game means the world to the supporters of these two clubs. This game is not just about three points, but the pride of a win and rubbing salt on the wounds on the opponents. They both hate losing to each other.
Mohun Bagan were leading the game 2-1 going into the half-time during the Durand Cup 1957. Former Club secretary, JC Guha, touched the players’ feet to turn things around. Eventually, they went on to win the game 3-2.
In 2012, the match was abandoned due to the violence on and off the pitch. The crowd threw some object on a Mohun Bagan player which resulted in severe injury, thereby, took the player to the hospital and there was ultimate chaos between the supporters.
Despite the inception of the Indian Super League club ATK in 2014, East Bengal and Mohun Bagan continues to attract plenty of fans when compared to the ISL outfit. They have assured that they would never merge with the newly formed Indian Super League.
Indian striker Jobby Justin has a revelation with the Red and Gold Brigade. The striker from Thiruvananthapuram has featured regularly for East Bengal this season and has gone on to score 4 goals from just 6 appearances this season. Jobby has been on the fan’s lips this term following a powerful start.
Johnny Acosta is one of the established players in East Bengal squad this season. The Costa Rica International opted to join the Kolkata club in 2018. He has made 5 appearances for the club and has been a rock at the back for the club.
Sony Norde, who re-signed for Mohun Bagan this summer is spending his fourth year at the club. The attacker has always been an integral part of the side. The Haitian lifted the I-League and Federation Cup with Mohun Bagan in 2015. With the new manager at stake now, Norde has netted 2 goals in 4 games this campaign.
ASSIER PIERRICK DIPANDA DICKA:
The Cameroon International has been a star man up front. Mohun Bagan have made a particularly poor start to the campaign, but he has stood up front to win two games singlehandedly this campaign. Assier Pierrick will be looking to add to his tally in this derby.
EAST BENGAL VS MOHUN BAGAN – HEAD TO HEAD:
These two clubs meet at least three times in a year, with twice in the I-league and once in the Calcutta Football League. East Bengal have not managed to beat their arch-rivals in 2 years across all competitions. The last time when they played in the Kolkata League on September 2, 2018, at Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan in front of thousands of people, the match ended in a 2-2 draw.
East Bengal – 125
Mohun Bagan – 109
Draw – 113
DATE: 16th December (Sunday)
Time: 5:30 PM
Venue: Salt Lake Stadium, Kolkata
Live on Star Sports Network and Hotstar.