Meet Debjit Majumder: Mohun Bagan's new hero. However, it must be pointed that this wasn't the first time Debjit Majumder played a part in a horrid experience for Kolkata giants East Bengal.
The goalkeeper, who turned out to be the saviour for an underperforming Mohun Bagan defense on Saturday evening, was part of the Red and Golds squad back in 2011-12. Debjit made only four appearances for the side, which included the infamous 4-1 drubbing at the hands of Aryan in a Calcutta Football League (CFL) Premier Division match.The young goalkeeper made one good save to frustrate Ugo Chukwu Ogbuka early in the second half, but conceded four goals thereafter as East Bengal gave up a slender one-goal lead.
Hailing from a small town called Hindmotor near Kolkata and having got his footballing lessons under coach Anup Nag, he was a member of Uttarpara Netaji Brigade team. If you visit the club during the off-season, you are almost certain to see the likes of Pritam Kotal, Shouvik Ghosh and Abhinabo Bag sweating it out.
Debjit made his first breakthrough at the Kolkata Maidan for the Food Corporation of India (FCI) in the CFL back in 2008. Thereafter, he went on to represent the likes of Kalighat M.S. and United Sikkim. He was also part of Bengal's National Games winning squad in 2011 and Santosh Trophy winning team the same year, though his first team opportunities were limited.
He then plied his trade for Bhawanipore for two seasons, where he came very close to winning promotion into the I-League on one occasion. Debjit's resume also includes a man of the tournament award in the erstwhile famous Bordoloi Trophy playing for the Mariners' sister club. The reward for all the hard work finally came in 2014, when Mohun Bagan signed him as a replacement to skipper Shilton Paul, who was due to join Chennaiyin FC ahead of the Indian Super League (ISL).
The new recruit got the nod ahead of the likes of Monotosh Ghosh and experienced Vinay Singh in the team and had played the last five matches for Bagan in the CFL .Quite predictably, the starting spot was reclaimed by Shilton when he came back from the loan stint, but his injury gave Debjit another chance to show his mettle - this time in the I-League.
The shot stopper rose to the occasion in no time, but it was his performance in his second Kolkata derby, that saw him win plaudits.
"I will like to thank my teammates for their continous support. It was a great win and a moment to cherish," expressed Majumder.
"The first save (Dudu Omagbemi's shot) was the best one as it gave me confidence to grow in the game," enunciated the player, who is set to pose a stern test for Shilton Paul, when the latter is back in contention for a start.