THE FINAL OF the Durand Cup 2023 will be another Kolkata Derby, in Kolkata.
After East Bengal beat NorthEast United in thrilling penalties to get to the finale, their arch rivals Mohun Bagan also made their way to the top by beating FC Goa from a deficit.
The Gaurs started well at the Salt Lake Stadium with Noah Sadaoui capitalising from a Hugo Boumous mis-pass to put Goa ahead 23 minutes in. But the Mariners consolidated and struck back just before half-time, as Jason Cummings scored from the spot in a penalty that was controversially given.
In the second half, however, the Green & Maroons came into their own as Armando Sadiku came on as a substitute. The Bagan attack rallied around the Albanian international as he got on the scoresheet around the hour mark and even set up his teammates multiple times; although they failed to convert.
Despite that, the 2-1 scoreline was enough to put them over the line and put Mohun Bagan face to face with East Bengal at the Durand Cup final for the first time since 2004.
In the group stage the two arch rivals, who have won the Durand 16 times each, played each other with East Bengal winning 1-0. Now, Mohun Bagan have a second chance to seal the 102 year old rivalry's bragging rights at the grandest stage of the oldest tournament in Asia, while East Bengal will look to capitalise on their winning momentum and repeat their earlier feat.
Anticipation around the match has already reached sky high with social media being abuzz with fans looking for tickets within an hour of the match-up being set.
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