In the history of football, there are two iconic clubs playing against each other in Kolkata. Like every other Derby match, the two arch rivals Mohun Bagan AC and East Bengal FC has an aged old history of fascinating matches. With entry of East Bengal into the ISL this year, things have got bigger for the two clubs. The supporters and the fantasy football players are waiting eagerly for their respective teams to win in the ISL.
Just as the big matches waits for all online fantasy football players, here are a few intriguing facts that make Kolkata derby special and different from the others. Let’s take a look at the rich history of the two clubs that dates back to 100 years.
Fact 1: First year of Kolkata Derby
The first Kolkata derby was held on 8th august 1921. It was long before the independence when these two clubs were created and the fight began. The game initially ended with 0-0 but later in the replay match Mohun Bagan won by 3 goals. Unarguably one of the oldest clubs in Asia, Mohun Bagan was established in the year 1889 and you would be amazed to know that they were the first club that had beaten the British team and won a trophy during the pre-independence era.
Fact 2: Distressing event of the rivalry
This rivalry is beyond the game. It’s a complete emotion. Although all players playing for the clubs are Bengalis but there are two divisions that separates them. West Bengal born “ghotis” are the ones playing from the Mohun Bagan team, whereas the eastern Bengal born “bangals” are the ones playing for the East Bengal team. Like India-Pakistan match, supporters are emotionally engaged with their respective teams. For fantasy football games player, the 1975 incident was very distressing indeed. In this match Mohun Bagan’s loss to East Bengal by 5 goals provoked an ardent Mohun Bagan Fan named Umakanta Palodhi to commit suicide in grief.
Fact 3: Darkest day of Kolkata rivalry
Another depressing incident that certainly makes this rivalry stand out in the crowd is the match day of 16th August 1980. Even the players engaged in fantasy premier leagues experience the negative vibes during any match between these two clubs till date. However, dating back to this day, when referee game a red card to two players namely Dilip Palit and Bidesh Basu of East Bengal in the 2nd half of the match, the crowd erupted in anger. What’s was the result? A major stampede within the Eden Gardens causing death of 16 young lives! That day was certainly a very painful day in the history of Kolkata Derby.
Fact 4: Rivalry beyond the fields – the fish wars
Even if you’re not acquainted with Bengali cuisines, the rivalry between these two clubs have made sure that you know the names of two most important fishes of Kolkata – hilsa and prawns. Loving known as the illish and chingri, each fish is deemed to represent East Bengal and Mohun Bagan respectively. Fantasy football in India is more popular because of the presence of these two clubs. So, the moment a team wins, the supporters deliberately engage into their favorite fish cuisine and celebrate the victory!
Fact 5: Highest number of audiences
During the Federation cup 1977 semifinal, East Bengal won the match when Baichung Bhutia socred 3 goals, the average attendance in Salt Lake team was around 131000. This number shows the craze that people have for this Derby!
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