Kolkata giants Mohun Bagan's ever increasing list of new recruits got even longer as the club agreed terms with Sanjay Balmuchu this week. The Tata Football Academy (TFA) graduate, who represented Mohammedan Sporting in the I-League second division last season and will now be part of the rosters of another century-old Kolkata club.
Mohun Bagan had already secured the services of two defenders - Raju Gaikwad and Safar Sardar (both from East Bengal) but have decided to sign more players in the same position to strengthen the squad for the Calcutta League.
East Bengal, the arch-rivals of the Green and Maroons have won the local league last five years on a trot and will match the best ever streak in the competition's history if they win it again this year. The Red and Golds had also won it six times in a row between 1970-75 which was a golden period in the club's history.
Apart from keeping the core of the I-League squad intact, Mohun Bagan have already roped in Subhash Singh and Lenny Rodrigues. The other players who have been retained are: Vinay Singh, Shilton Paul, Debjit Majumder, Kinshuk Debnath, Pritam Kotal, Shouvik Ghosh, Balwant Singh, Sukhen Dey, Pratik Chowdhury, Bikramjit Singh, Manish Bhargav, Ram Malik, Pankaj Moula and Ujjal Haoladar.
With the Calcutta League set to clash with the second edition of Indian Super League (ISL), the Mariners have also signed a number of players who excelled for the local Kolkata teams last season. Former East Bengal goalkeeper Arnab Das Sharma has been roped in from Mohammedan Sporting while young strikers, namely Raja Das (Kalighat) and Azharuddin Mallick (United Sports) have also penned a deal with the Green and Maroon brigade.