Calcutta: The dreaded December 9 will be at the back of the mind of almost everyone when East Bengal and Mohun Bagan clash in the return-leg Derby — the second of the season — at the Salt Lake Stadium, on Saturday.
Now, given the present scenario in the I-League, the situation demands East Bengal to look forward and pocket full points instead of harping on the past.
“If we’re to remain at the top of the table, we must win Saturday’s game. For sure, it won’t be easy given the hype surrounding this match.
“But professional footballers should be aware of what their job is irrespective of the circumstances,” said East Bengal midfielder Harmanjot Singh Khabra, on Wednesday.
It was through Khabra’s strike that East Bengal took the lead in the first leg before the game was cancelled after half-time as Bagan refused to play, citing lack of security at the ground.
“I feel very disturbed whenever my mind travels back to that day. All that took place shouldn’t have happened.
“Anyway, it’s history now. We’re very much sure those scenes won’t be repeated this Saturday. Spectators will enjoy every moment of the match,” Khabra said.
His current form may certainly earn him a place in East Bengal’s playing XI for the high-octane encounter. And Khabra is confident to come up with an even better performance on Saturday.