Calcutta Football League 2018: 5 things Mohun Bagan need to improve

mohun bagan
Mohun Bagan

Mohun Bagan have started their 2018-19 Calcutta Football League Premier Divison A campaign with flying colours after grabbing all 9 points from their opening three games. The Kolkata giants are desperate to win the league this time around as they haven't been able to lift any silverware for the last few years.

The Kolkata League has been a happy hunting ground for their arch-rivals. East Bengal have won the league for a record 8 times in a row. The closest Bagan reached was the last time when they finished on equal points, only separated by an inferior goal difference.

Despite the ongoing political issues, Shankarlal Chakraborty, Bagan's coach, has managed to keep the team's shape intact. But there are certain aspects that he would love to improve.

Here are five things the Mariners need to do in order to win the title:

1. Score more goals

Mohun Bagan have adopted a new 3-5-2 formation in the last match against George Telegraph. The two foreigners, Dipanda Dicka and Henry Kisekka, started in front of the goal. But the green and maroon brigade failed to create enough openings as the Ugandan striker looked unimpressive. They are yet to find the proper combination between them.

Arguably, Mohun Bagan have the best front line in the tournament. The supporters expect to see their team scoring more often now. As we already know that they had to miss out on a goal difference the last time, they need to score more goals to be in a comfortable position.

2. Eradicate defensive lapses

Eze Kingsley is the leader of the defense, as always. He has averted dangers many times already. But the others are not as sharp as him. It was Shankar Roy who saved Bagan from dropping 2 points in the last match with a brilliant save.

Time and again the opponents have created openings that could cause danger to the Mariners. The defense failed to deal with some quick counter attacks, and the goalkeeper had to come to the rescue.

In their second game of the league, Rainbow scored twice past them. The other teams have also asked questions every time they went forward. Despite playing with three in the back, Bagan have to work on the last line of their defense.

3. Solve midfield issues

Mehtab Hossain

The century-old club hasn't looked menacing enough to excite their fans. One big reason behind this is their non-existent midfield. They are not trying to win possession and supply to the forwards.

It is only Mehtab Hossain who is shining brightly. But he is not fit enough to play the full 90 minutes. Shankarlal said that he didn't want to risk him. That's why he was playing him as a substitute, he further added.

But this is the time when he must come from the start. The veteran midfielder knows every grass of Maidan and his experience can change Bagan's approach altogether. Mehtab can dictate the tempo of the game and, his introduction has been vital behind Bagan's victories in the previous two games.

4. Be more creative

There is no doubt that Mohun Bagan lack creativity. Shilton D'Siva, Pintu Mahata or Sourav das are all one dimensional and can't come up with new ideas when they have the ball on their feet.

Tirthankar Sarkar's inch-perfect cross into the box was headed into the goal by Dipanda Dicka to snatch all the three points against George Telegraph. He made his impact only three minutes after coming from the bench. He also created Bagan's only goal in the first match against Pathachakra.

Sarkar was pivotal in Bengal's recent Santosh Trophy run. Shankarlal must give him more minutes on the pitch as he can extract the best out of the two decent strikers.

5. Have a dominant wing play

In their opening match, Arijit Bagui ran down the left channel to create the threat in the opponent's box. But with the season progressing, Mohun Bagan are not using the channels with enough precision. The wing-backs are looking lethargic. They are delivering only meaningless crosses and long balls.

The Mariners must use the wings wisely from the next matches and try to deliver as many crosses into the box as possible.

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Edited by Sudeshna Banerjee
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