ATK Mohun Bagan FC’s Edu Garcia has been playing in Kolkata for more than a year now and has been a mainstay at the Kolkata club.
He had joined the club in December 2018 and was an integral part of the side’s title-winning campaign in the 2019-20 season. He had scored six goals, including one in the final against Chennaiyin FC to help the side from Kolkata land their third title.
The former Zaragoza man has enjoyed his stint in the City of Joy so far and has also signed a contract extension this year which will keep him in Kolkata for two more years.
“Kolkata is amazing,” the Spanish player told Goal. And I have known incredible people there. ATK has been the biggest club in ISL and you can feel it when you play for them. Now ATK Mohun Bagan is even bigger.”
The Spanish midfielder also expressed that the merger of ATK and Mohun Bagan is a positive development and stated that he believes that the amalgamation of two of the biggest clubs in India will only make the new entity stronger.
“As I told you, I think they are the two biggest clubs in India and now they are one, stronger, bigger and more supporters. I can’t wait to play and defend this jersey,” said the ATK Mohun Bagan star.
The Mariners’ arch-rivals East Bengal too are all set to compete in the top tier league this season after Shree Cement Limited came in as an investor.
Garcia revealed that he had previously watched the Kolkata derby from the stands and had experienced the fandom that is associated with a high profile game.
“I have been in the stands in a derby when they played the I-league. It’s crazy, I love football when the stadium is full and people support their team for 90 minutes. It will be one of the most exciting moments in ISL for sure,” said the Spanish footballer.
ATK Mohun Bagan have earned a direct slot in the AFC Cup, thanks to Mohun Bagan's I-League victory last season. The former Real Zaragoza player is looking forward to playing in the AFC Cup.
“It’s a big challenge for us to represent ATKMB in Asia. It’s also a big responsibility and we will give our best in every game.”
The 2020-21 season of the ISL is set to be held at a centralised venue in Goa owing to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The Spanish midfielder praised the authorities and supported their decision to organise the league in a single venue keeping in mind the safety of the players.
“ISL and the authorities decided to do everything in the same city and I think it’s a good idea. You can control in a better way when everybody stays in the same place. So if we can play safely and Indian people can support their teams from home, I will be happy. The pandemic has changed everything. ISL has had to make a decision and I think they are doing it very well,” Garcia opined.