A handful of East Bengal fans who attended their club's training session at the Barasat Stadium in Kolkata did not hide their feelings towards coach Khalid Jamil and striker Willis Plaza as both of them were greeted with "Go Back" chants. Although the Red and Gold's officials are showing patience with their I League winning coach, they are not willing to put up with Jamils's blue eyed boy Plaza.
The officials have contacted other alternative options, with former East Bengal player Ranti Martins topping their wishlist. According to reports, the Nigerian has clearly stated that he can join only after February as he must continue his stay in the United States to fulfill his 'Green Card' formalities. East Bengal though, cannot afford to wait until February. So, Darryl Duffy and Edeh Chidi are being considered as the alternatives, as reported in Sangbad Pratidin.
Duffy is currently plying his trade with St. Mirren FC in the Scottish second tier. He is likely to join East Bengal as he has been a bench warmer in nine games out of 11 for his current side and came on as a substitute in the remaining two matches only in the dying minutes.
Jamil is all set to completely overhaul his starting XI against Shillong Lajong. Arnab Mondal will pair with Eduardo Ferreira at the heart of defense and Chullova will replace Mehtab Singh at right back. Left back Deepak Kumar will also make way for Salam Ranjan Singh who played as a centre-back against Aizwal FC. Katsumi Yusa is expected to operate from his favourite right wing position with Plaza and Charles D'Souza leading the attack.
On the other hand, Mohun Bagan's Australian recruit Diogo Ferreira has still not been able to impress coach Sanjoy Sen and he is likely to remain out of squad for their next game against Churchill Brothers. Star striker and the top goal scorer of previous season Dipanda Dicka has shrugged off his knee injury and might feature against Churchill. Sen is reluctant to break the winning combination and if all goes well, Mohun Bagan will field the same starting XI that took the pitch against East Bengal.
Sources close to Bagan say that captain Sony Norde held a closed door meeting with all the players and emphasised on being selfless inside the box. Bagan lost two vital points against Lajong after winning the derby last season and Norde has asked specifically to drive away any sense of self contentment among the players after winning against East Bengal.
Mohun Bagan will look to carry forward their momentum when they face Churchill Brothers at the Barasat Stadium on Sunday.