It’s going to be a tough season, says East Bengal coach Morgan

Kolkata, Dec 19 (IANS) East Bengal head coach Trevor James Morgan on Monday said the I-League football tournament starting next month will be a tough nut to crack.

“It will not be easy as all the 10 teams will be ready. Some of our opponents are known while some are unknown. It’s going to be a tough season,” Morgan, in his second stint at the helm of the red and gold brigade, told reporters after East Bengal’s first practice session here.

“It’s something that you dream about (I-League trophy) and I am no different. My aim is to make East Bengal the most successful club in India.”

“But as I said, it will be a long season ahead of us with 18 games to be played,” the Australian said when asked about the fact that East Bengal are still to win the I-League.

Morgan helped East Bengal win their last national level tournament when the city giants clinched the Federation Cup in 2012, beating Dempo of Goa.

Since then, the 2003 Asean Club Cup winners have dominated the local Calcutta Football League (CFL) but failed to make their mark in India.

“It’s not been there for a long time, is it? I think we all realise that this is a good opportunity for the club to do that (win the league). During my first stint with East Bengal, we did everything to try and win it.”

“But as you could see the fans today morning at the ground, the only thing they want is to win the I-League. Hopefully, we will try and achieve it,” said 60-year-old.

Morgan is yet to get his full quota of four foreigners but he is not willing to cite that as an excuse.

“I don’t want to see that as an excuse that we didn’t win the I League because we did not have the best foreigners.”

“There is always something rather getting the fourth foreigner in around the Christmas time. It is important to get the right people. If we have to wait till the first game, so we have to. We have got a big enough squad to not miss one foreigner.”

“The fixtures are out but there is still going to be some changes. We have four or five away games before we play our first game. So, obviously that’s something we have to look at.”

“Playing three away matches ahead of a home game will be tough for us,” Morgan said.

Talking about the other sides, he reckon will give a good fight, he said: “The guys in Bengaluru too will be thinking about the sides like Mohun Bagan and East Bengal.”

“Yeah, there are some good teams in the league. With Churchill they have the pick of all the top players in Goa now. So a lot of the player’s from the other three clubs (Dempo, Salgaocar and Sporting) will look to play in the I-League.”