BCCI president and former Indian cricketer Sourav Ganguly, who also happens to be a hardcore football fan, reckons that the merger between ATK, the Kolkata-based Indian Super League franchise and I-League giant Mohun Bagan is a “momentous partnership for Bengal football”. On Thursday, the RPSG Group, (owner of ATK) acquired majority shareholding in Mohun Bagan Football Club (India) Private Limited and Bagan is all set to play as ATK-Mohun Bagan in next year’s ISL.
“A momentous partnership for Bengal football. I have no doubt ATK and Mohun Bagan will be torchbearers of moving Indian football forward together,” Ganguly tweeted.
— Sourav Ganguly (@SGanguly99) January 16, 2020Advertisement
“In this context, I am very thankful to India’s one of the most well-known industrialists and our Kolkata’s very own Dr Sanjiv Goenka for his investment through RPSG. Their vision on Indian football aligns with our philosophy and our combined forces will surely take the club to bigger and greater heights. In this respect, it is a red-letter day in the history of this iconic institution,” said Swapan Sadhan Bose, Chairman, Mohun Bagan Football Club (India) Pvt. Ltd. in an official statement.
“I can assure millions and millions of Bagan supporters spread across the globe, that the poetry will continue. Now that the prose is ready to lend a helping hand,” he added.
Meanwhile, former India captain Bhaichung Bhutia also hailed the merger but hopes that ATK should maintain the 130-year-old club’s legacy to reap rewards of their hard-work.
“It’s good that Mohun Bagan is getting a good buyer but I think the colour and name has to be kept and the logo. Their history is very rich. It’s good that RPSG Group is buying it, they are a very professional company. But I hope that they can completely use the Mohun Bagan colour, logo and jersey. It should be maroon and green,” Bhutia said in an interview.
The RPSG Group is set to become 80 per cent majority shareholder while Mohun Bagan Football Club (India) Private Limited will own the remaining. The merged club will come into existence from June 1, 2020 and will participate in the Indian Super League season (ISL) next season as well as other important competitions held by the All India Football Federation (AIFF).
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