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Shyam Thapa: Kerala, Bengaluru fans can’t understand the emotion of Kolkata Derby

Legendary striker Shyam Thapa is delighted by the recent developments at his former club East Bengal…

Former India international Shyam Thapa has termed East Bengal‘s entry into the Indian Super League (ISL) as a step in the right direction.

Thapa, who serves as the chairman of the Technical Committee of the All India Football Federation (AIFF), told Goal that ISL is more ‘likeable’ with East Bengal in it. 

The former East Bengal footballer said, “This (East Bengal moving to ISL) is an extremely good move. It had to be done. The people of Bengal wanted it and as a former player, I also wanted the club to play in the top tier of Indian football.

“Without East Bengal, I was not liking ISL. Now Mohun Bagan is also going to play in ISL.”

Kolkata Derby

He credited Mamata Banerjee, the Chief Minister of West Bengal, for her role in helping the club move to India’s top division and stressed the importance of organizing more Kolkata derbies in the national league. 

“Kudos to the Chief Minister for helping East Bengal to get into ISL. I am very happy. 

“Most importantly, the derby will continue to be played. It is the game that keeps football alive. Watching a derby gives me immense pleasure.”

He added, “No match can match the emotions and passion of a derby. No Bengaluru and Kerala fan can understand that.”

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