It's been a long wait of 680 days, but the Kolkata derby - one of the fiercest in India - is finally returning home, to the Salt Lake stadium. The last derby at the same venue ended with honours shared, but with East Bengal and Mohun Bagan, a draw is never satisfying.


Last time these two went head to head in the Calcutta Football League(CFL), with both teams level on points - 23 - a superior goal difference helped the Red and Yellows clinch the title. It's the first time Khalid Jamil and Sanjoy Sen will try to take the other for a spin, and given their illustrious careers, a clash of the Titans seem to be on the cards. 



For the home side, Mohun Bagan, it looks to be an uphill battle. On paper, they are the underdogs but riding on the support of those inside the stadium, 'underdog' is merely just a tag today. They didn't look too convincing against Minerva in the opening match of the tournament. They lacked sharpness and coordination, and the one goal they scored came from the individual brilliance of Sony Norde. 



East Bengal, on the other hand, were held by the defending champions, Aizawl FC. They were 2-0 up against the visitors, but somehow let the lead slip. The coach was critical of their performance and will hope for a better outing against Bagan. The focus will be firmly set on East Bengal's new recruit, Katsumi, who will be up against his former employers. It will interesting to see what kind of reception he gets once he heads out the tunnel. A scorching Kolkata derby awaits.


Probable XI: 


Mohun Bagan: Shilton; Bagui, Debnath, Kingsley, Ricky; Azharuddin, Kinowaki, D'Silva, Norde; Kromah; Dipanda.


East Bengal: Barreto; Mehtab, Ranjan, Eduardo, Deepak; Bazzoau; Danmawia, Katsumi, Al Amna, Brandon; Plaza. 


Prediction: We predict a 2-1 win for East Bengal.


Kick-off: 2:00 PM IST