Calcutta: Everything is rotten in the state of Mohun Bagan!
A farcical pre-season camp, unfit and under-performing players taking home fat pay-cheques and one loss after another.
Bagan are staring at another season of hopelessness.
The latest setback came on Friday when the green and maroon brigade crashed to their second I-League defeat in as many matches.
After Lajong on last Saturday, it was Prayag United SC’s turn to rub salt on their wounds winning 2-1 at the Salt Lake Stadium. here. And then the Federation Cup debacle is still fresh in the minds.
The fans, who have been waiting for a trophy for the last two and half years, thought enough was enough.
The moment Kayne Vincent scored — that turned out to be the eventual match-winner — at the stroke of half-time, all hell broke loose.
Club general secretary Anjan Mitra faced the brunt as irate supporters hurled choicest expletives and threw chairs at the VIP box.
A scared Mitra could not take it anymore and slipped out of the 10 minutes into the second half. Such was the anger of the fans that most of the players had to leave the stadium through the backdoor.
The poor show has put coach Santosh Kashyap in the firing line. Kashyap has failed to deliver with a line-up, which boasts of names like Okolie Odafe, Tolgay Ozebe, Syed Rahim Nabi and Arindam Bhattacharya.
Bagan officials later had a meeting and it was decided that Kashyap would be at the helm till the Airlines Gold Cup final scheduled for Tuesday, where they take on Mohammedan Sporting.
“We should be patient… We need only one win to turn things around. The players are unfit… They need to attain match fitness as soon as possible. I’m not blaming anyone… I admit that we played badly… But then, there is no point in crying over spilt milk,” Mitra said on Friday.
The names of David Booth, who did a commendable job with now-defunct Mahindra United, and former Bagan player-turned-coach Uzbek Igor Shkvyrin are doing the rounds.
During the post-match media conference, Kashyap, though didn’t want to comment on his future. Instead, he said he would be concentrating on Tuesday’s match.
“We played well … We created opportunities. But my players couldn’t convert them. I think everything will be okay once we get a win. I’m hopeful that win will come on Tuesday,” Kashyap said.
It is highly unlikely that Kashyap will be there even if there is a win on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, United SC coach Sanjoy Sen was pleased with his boys’ effort.
“They executed the plans well. We knew if we could stop Odafe and Tolgay, we will win the match. The players stopped Odafe. As of Tolgay, he was nowhere today and had a very bad match.”
Sen predicted Bagan would struggle this season too. “I think they would finish fifth.”