MOHAMMEDAN SPORTING HAVE made it clear that they intend to be a title contender upon their return to the I-League this season, and to that end they have been signing players who have significant experience of playing at this level.
Recently, they have signed Arijit Bagui and Manoj Mohammed, two players who have played for the two other big clubs in Kolkata. This right back - left back duo may well become the wingbacks of choice for the Black Panthers' defence this season.
Arijit Bagui has been active in Kolkata's football cirtuit since 2013, when he debuted in senior football playing for Kalighat MS in the Calcutta Football League and the 2nd Division League. After a brief stint at Peerless, he joined Mohun Bagan in 2017. For the Mariners, he made 29 appearances in the top division league and was part of their CFL-winning squad in 2018-19. In the I-League Qualifiers (2nd Division League 2019-20 final round) he was playing for Bhawanipore FC and put in a good effort, which convinced the Mohammedan officials to sign him.
Manoj Mohammed, meanwhile, is a young prospect from Jalpaiguri who came out of East Bengal Academy's North Bengal branch. He played for the Red and Golds in the U-18 I-League and in 2018 got promoted to the first team. For Manoj, it was a major vindication after years of struggle, during which his mother helped him achieve his dream by earning money running a small shop. He played 16 top flight matches for East Bengal.
The two players are expected to join Jose Hevia's training camp about a month before the I-League 2020-21 season kicks off. The club, after recently signing a new investor, is serious about aiming for the title and earning a place in the AFC Cup for the first time in their history; and to make that happen they are also focusing on signing some high quality foriegners, one of whom is expected to have seizable experience playing in La liga.