The AFC Cup Group D matches now standstill due to the ongoing worldwide pandemic. Asian confederation announced that they are preparing to resume the tournament from 18th August. Looking at the current situation, Kolkata giants ATK Mohun Bagan is eyeing to file a host plead for the AFC Cup group stage. As Football Monk can exclusively confirm.

Previous delay and reconsideration

AFC Cup Group-E matches were scheduled to be hosted in the Maldives. But the matches stood called off when few Bengaluru FC allegedly flouted the host’s quarantine norms. The group stages got indefinitely delayed since then. However, AFC enquired Bagan whether they could host the tournament in Kolkata later in June. But, as reported earlier, ATKMB turned down AFC’s request. The Green and Maroons were somewhat forced to take this decision looking at the current situation in the City of Joy.

ATK Mohun Bagan
ATK Mohun Bagan in plan to host AFC CUP group stages

However, with time the situation in Kolkata is slowly proceeding towards improvement. The City recorded the fewest number of cases yesterday ever since the second wave began. The Kolkata giants were always eager to host the tournament from the very moment they got into the AFC Cup. But it’s the ongoing pandemic that led to a change in plan.

But for now, it seems things have changed as Football Monk understands that the ATKMB officials have initiated talks with the tournament organizers to make Kolkata a possible venue for the group stages.

On-field Conditions in favor of Mariners

As the dates have rolled into the month of June, the transfer window is now open. Allowing the clubs to add in their pres signed players to the roaster. In ATK Mohun Bagan’s case, the situation seems even better. As they have already bagged in custodian Amrinder Singh and Forward Liston Colaco. And are expected to announce some more names in the coming days. Thus this delay turned out to be scope for the Kolkata-based side to strengthen their squad.

Decision not yet finalized

Although a majority of the things might be in place for the team, the final call is yet to be made. Sources close to the development confirmed Football Monk that the official request to AFC will only be made after a meeting within the club management and the government. We will keep a close look at how things proceed from here on as we hope the situation develops in the upcoming weeks.

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By Debojyoti Sarkar

Rabbits don't win marathons, the tortoise does.