I-League 2017: Mohun Bagan ground preparing to host ISL matches next season?
What's the story?
After hosting their first ever I-League match at their home ground, Mohun Bagan are said to be preparing to stage their home matches of the Indian Super League next year at the same venue. As per the reports, permanent work on renovation will start on January 15 this year.
In case you didn't know...
After many speculations over a possible merger of the I-League and the Indian Super League, it is likely that Kolkata giants Mohun Bagan and East Bengal will be joining the cash-rich tournament next season.
The heart of the matter
Mohun Bagan made quick arrangements at their home ground ahead of their I-League clash against the Indian Arrows and are scheduled to host another match against Chennai City at the Maidan venue.
The management has already made temporary arrangements like installing an away dressing room, floodlight facilities, and camera towers. But to host an ISL game, they need to make permanent renovations.
However, the club management is said to be determined to join the ISL next season and is willing to make the necessary changes in order to host matches from the cash-rich league at the Maidan ground, according to sources.
The ground which was not of a proper shape has been measured and marked as per set standards. Several other features also have to be altered before staging match of such a stature. More importantly, the space underneath the stands needs to be properly mended to make it look proper.
The Mohun Bagan ground has the initial requirements, but it needs a lot of work ahead. If the work begins on January 15, the century-old club will get more than nine months for renovation, as the ISL usually begins around October. It will be interesting to see how the prestigious club goes about the whole process.
The Mohun Bagan ground was once regarded as the best football arenas in the country and used to host many high-profile matches including many Kolkata Derbies. However, after the Salt Lake Stadium came into existence, the Maidan ground took a back seat as no top-tier matches were held at the venue. It is a good sign that the ground is back in action once again; hopefully, it will bring more glory to the Mariners in the future.