SC East Bengal will face arch-rivals ATK Mohun Bagan in the second Kolkata derby of the Indian Super League 2020-21 (ISL) season at the Fatorda Stadium in Goa on Friday, February 19.
The Mariners had defeated Robbie Fowler's side 2-0 in its very first Kolkata Derby in the ISL on November 27 at the Tilak Maidan.
With the world-famous rivalry stretching back over 100 years, the two football giants of the nation have already faced each other a whopping 371 times. Mohun Bagan, however, has been rechristened as ATK Mohun Bagan since then after their merger with three-time ISL champions ATK.
The East Bengal vs Mohun Bagan head-to-head is led by the men in red and gold, who have won 129 matches and lost 119 of the clashes. Friday will be the second time the two teams, in their new guises, will be meeting in the ISL.
Interestingly, the very first match between them had ended in a stalemate in the semi-final of the Cooch Behar Cup in 1921 and the two sides have drawn 122 matches since then.
East Bengal and Mohun Bagan have historically clashed at the Salt Lake Stadium over the years. Hence, the neutral venue of Goa’s Tilak Maidan will hardly provide any home advantage for the ISL debutants.
Though East Bengal lead in the head-to-head, Mohun Bagan have been more successful in the recent past. The team in maroon and green have won five of their last 10 matches with East Bengal, drawing twice and losing thrice.
With the scoreline reading 0-0 just once during the two teams’ last 10 matches against each other, the super clash on Friday is expected to see goals, at the very least. And with eight of their last ten face-offs ending in one team winning, fans will expect this fixture to be a decisive one as well.
Though ATKMB started their ISL 2020-21 campaign with a clean sheet and three points against Kerala Blasters, they have hardly managed that against East Bengal in the last 10 games in their historic version of the club.
While Mohun Bagan have managed just four clean sheets in their last five encounters, their arch-rivals East Bengal have managed just two, thereby hinting at a medium to high-scoring face-off on Friday.
Feature image courtesy: Twitter.com / @sc_eastbengal