CFL 2017: Whom did East Bengal coach, players and officials dedicate the special title win?

Kingfisher East Bengal clinches their 39th Calcutta Football League title in style by salvaging a 2-2 draw against arch rivals Mohun Bagan in what turned out to be a pulsating Kolkata derby at Siliguri today. The Red and Gold brigade needed just a point to win their record 8th successive CFL title and Khalid Jamil’s men did exactly that with a lot of spirit as they came back strongly into the game despite being down by a goal twice. After the game correspondent Sabyasachi Bagchi caught up with the key figures of the East Bengal side who made significant contributions to this massive feat.

Khalid Jamil (Head Coach): Ever since I arrived at Kolkata, I have always heard about this game. Wherever I went, I received questions regarding this game. So the pressure was certainly there on me. I was tensed. I knew Al Amna would score from the spot but I couldn’t see the shot in tension. But according to me, the turning point was Laldanmawia’s goal. I want to thank the officials as well. They provided me whatever I wanted. Right now, I am not thinking about the I-League. I have to think how I would fit the five foreigners in the first XI.

Mahmoud Al Amna (Midfielder): It is a special feeling. I am dedlighted to score my first goal in the Kolkata derby. I promised my kids that I would gift them this trophy and I want to dedicate this win to them. The game was tough but at the end of the day, we fought as a team and I’m so happy to start my journey in this club with a trophy. The next mission is of course the I-League.

Willis Plaza (Forward): I want to share this beautiful moment with the fans. I might not score a goal today but the team played extremely well and winning a trophy to start the season is really a wonderful feeling.

Laldanmawia Ralte (Winger): It’s a great feeling. Winning the second big trophy in six months time is amazing. I’m so happy to contribute with a goal. After winning the I-League, now this the Calcutta Football League title. My combination with Brendon too is getting better and better. I’m expecting this journey to continue in the I-League as well.

Debabrata Sarkar (Official): Being an official, I want to dedicate this moment to Late Swapan Bal, Late Paltu Das and all those hardworking officials who are no more with us. I am sure that they would have been delighted to see to this moment had they been alive. At the start of the season, we had almost an inexperienced side and credit should be given to Khalid Jamil with the way he delivered the result. I am happy for the boys.

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