BY ANSELM NORONHA Follow @apnoronha on twitter
Five-time national champions Dempo Sports Club, who lifted the I-League thrice in the first five seasons after it was revamped from National Football (NFL), got relegated from the top tier of Indian football following their final day 2-0 defeat at the hands of Salgaocar FC.
Although the club president Shrinivas Dempo had earlier claimed that Dempo players had agreed to stay with the Goan outfit through the second division of the league, Goal can confirm that Narayan Das, Pronay Halder and Prabir Das have officially requested for their releases.
Narayan Das is gaining interest from Kolkata, while Prabir Das has agreed a two-year deal with Mohun Bagan. At the same time, former champions Bengaluru FC are contemplating making a double swoop for Halder and Alwyn George among other clubs, although the latter hasn't yet officially handed in a letter for his transfer.
"Pronay, Narayan and Prabir have asked for a release. Besides East Bengal, Mohun Bagan are also interested in Narayan. Pronay has got interest from Bengaluru [FC] and East Bengal. Alwyn has not asked [for a release], but both Bengaluru and Bharat FC want him," a source in the know of things informed Goal.
"It's up to them (the players) finally. Dempo are not going to stop anyone. If anyone wants to go, the club will release them," the source added.
It has to be noted that Narayan Das, who got injured while playing for FC Goa in the Indian Super League (ISL) last year, did not play a single game for Dempo in the I-League last season. Similarly, Prabir Das and Pronay Halder played one and three matches respectively. On the other hand, Alwyn George scored only once in the 16 appearances that he made.