INDIAN FOOTBALL

East Bengal ace Arindam Bhattacharya steps down as captain

Wolves

Star man between the posts Arindam Bhattacharya gave up the armband as SC East Bengal captain on Saturday. The Red & Gold Brigade faced more frustration from another hitch and are now 11 games without a win in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2021-22.

The 32 year old took to Twitter to share his thoughts – “I’ve always been honest about the way I’ve played the game. And at this moment due to circumstances around me, I am stepping down as the captain of SC East Bengal“.

Like always, I will give the club, the shirt, and the supporters nothing short of 100% every single time I get on the pitch. And while I am off it, I will be there to help in whatever way needed. Let’s finish the season in the best possible way,” he continued.

Arindam was impressive in the 2019-20 season. Safeguarding the ATK Mohun Bagan net, the expert keeper concluded the campaign on a high. He recorded the most number of clean sheets and claimed the Golden Gloves award.

The Mariners went on to finish in 2nd after narrowly missing out on the championship.

Consequently, early in the season, SC East Bengal acquired his signature in a high-profile deal. Bhattacharya has exhibited excellent leadership and is a commanding presence at the back. He was soon named captain of the side given his boast-worthy credentials.

Despite having a defence that needs strengthening, Arindam Bhattacharya has established himself as one of the finest keepers in the country

However, it was a tough start to life at SCEB. He had to wrestle with the issue of having a leaky backline. They ended up conceding 9 goals from 7 games this campaign. To add further misery, he picked up an injury in the derby game. This kept him on the sidelines for around 4 matches.

Nonetheless, he made a swift comeback. Since then, Arindam has put some top-notch displays in the ensuing ties. His heroics allowed the Red & Gold Brigade remain unbeaten for a 3-match-run. They ended up losing to Jamshedpur FC in a game that neck-in-neck.

East Bengal have garnered 6 points, registering 6 draws and 5 losses. Up next, they are scheduled to face FC Goa on January 19.

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