NEW DELHI: After finishing third in the previous edition of the I-League, East Bengal skipper Arnab Mondal has set his eyes on winning the elusive I-League trophy for the Kolkata outfit in the 11th edition of the domestic league which is slated to kick-off from November 25, 2017.
“We want to win the I-League. It is as simple as that”, a confident Arnab Mondal said on the sidelines of the I-League launch in the nation’s capital yesterday. “A successful campaign for us will be winning the Hero I-League and we are focused on achieving the same.”
The Red and Golds have always been title challengers in the I-League finishing third last season with 33 points out of 18 matches, finishing below arch rivals Mohun Bagan and four points adrift of champions Aizawl FC.
“The best result for us will be winning the I-League and that is also my personal target. I want to lift the Hero I-League trophy with East Bengal in my career”, after a pause, he adds, “Individually, I am hell-bent on winning this trophy. In a sense, this trophy means a lot to me and winning it would mean the world to me.”
The defender further said that he will dedicate the I-League win to the fans. “If we win the I-League, it will be for the fans. They have been our support and have cheered for us through thick and thin. They deserve to be rewarded and we are striving on giving this gift to our fans”
But certainly, it will be tough as the Kolkata outfit face defending champions Aizawl FC in their opening fixture of the campaign. “Every team in the I-League presents its own challenges. No team is easy and every team plays to win. The challenge for us is to outplay them and secure the results”
“The pressure is always there when you play at the highest level but if we win a couple of our opening matches and gather maximum points, we can breathe a little.”
“We have to take one match at a time and at the same time aim for a win in every match we play including the away fixtures”, Mondal stated.