NONGDAMBA NAOREM HAS returned to Mohun Bagan, and Subha Ghosh is playing under Kibu Vicuna.
No, that's not a story from last season. It's the result of a double loan deal completed between Kerala Blasters and ATK Mohun Bagan.
The Mariners have brought back Naorem, the winger who played a prominent role in their I-League winning campaign last season, on a loan deal from the Blasters for an undisclosed fee, with an option to make a permanent move at the end of this season.
On the other end, 20 year old Subha Ghosh, a Mohun Bagan youth product who is being regarded as one of the top young forwards in the country, will go to Kerala Blasters on a 3 year deal to play under head coach Kibu Vicuna who promoted him to the Mohun Bagan first team and brought him to prominence.
Naorem's return to Mohun Bagan has a lot to do with Michael Soosairaj's injury. Soosairaj is not expected to fully recover for the next several weeks and even then there may be additional time needed for him to regain match fitness. Meanwhile, the Mariners' left wing has visibly suffered in his absence. Naorem, who already has a history of success at the club, is a fitting alternative for Antonio Habas to utilise.
Meanwhile, Subha Ghosh, who played 8 I-League games under Vicuna last season, has not been fielded by his successor Habas. Going to KBFC where Vicuna can use him as a viable second half substitute will get him experience and develop further as a player instead of spending a season on the bench due to Mohun Bagan's newfound heavily packed attacking department.
With the January transfer windows now open many clubs are looking into loan deals to fill up gaps in their squads. A number of ISL club players are also expected to depart for I-League clubs as the 2020-21 season for that competition gets underway on 9th January in Kolkata.