Shyam Thapa with Pele
Shyam Thapa with Pele

On Friday, Mohun Bagan officially became ATK Mohun Bagan. After the merger ATK, the club have decided to update the logo to include ATK. Other than that, the iconic logo will include the words ATK.

While today’s youngsters are weaned on Premier League or European clubs, Mohun Bagan has an important place in Kolkata and Bengal’s history.

Seen as the club of Ghotis (West Bengalis), as opposed to East Bengal, the club of Bangaals, it has had celebrity fans including Hemendra Kumar Ray, Manna Dey, Jyoti Basu, RD Burman, Sourav Ganguly, Amitabh Bachchan, Uttam Kumar and Mithun Chakravorty.

Founded in 1889 as the Mohun Bagan Football Club, it even had its moment in the sun as part of India’s freedom struggle when they beat the East Yorkshire Regiment 2-1 on 29 July, 1911 to become the first all-Indian side to beat a British side. Legend has it that they played barefoot, against the fully equipped British.

They are also the only Indian club who are part of the Club of Pioneers. The Club of Pioneers is a super-exclusive club of the oldest football clubs of each country.

Awarded by Sheffield Football Club Foundation awards, a club must meet the following criteria:

· Still play football in amateur or professional football competition today.

· Have constantly existed as a sports organisation since their date of foundation. (exceptions for periods of inactivity due to external reasons, for example war.)

· Are by definition the oldest existing football club of their country, referring to the foundation date of a football team as part of a multi-sport club or as a proper football club, playing to association football rules.

Live and support the values of the game and amateur football: Integrity, Respect, Community

Full list

Sheffield FC 1857, 24 October

Wrexham AFC 1864, 4 October

Queen's Park FC 1867, 9 July

Kjøbenhavns Boldklub 1878, 24 October

FC St. Gallen 1879, 19 April

Koninklijke HFC 1879, 15 September

Cliftonville FC 1879, 20 September

Royal Antwerp FC 1880

Savages FC Pietermaritzburg 1882, 26 August

Gezira SC 1882

Hong Kong F.C. 1886, 12 February

Yokohama C&AC 1886, 26 December

Associação Académica de Coimbra 1887, 3 November

North Shore Utd 1887

BFC Germania 1888 1888, 15 April

Mohun Bagan AC 1889, 15 August

Real Club Recreativo de Huelva 1889, 23 December

St. George's FC 1890

Albion Football Club 1891, 1 June

Santiago Wanderers 1892, 15 August

Genoa CFC 1893, 7 September

Odds Ballklubb 1894, March 31

CDJ Oran 1894, April 14

First Vienna FC 1894, 22 August

CS Fola Esch 1906, 9 December

ES Tunis 1919, January 15

FK Ljuboten 1919, 28 March

FK Sveikata 1919, 8 June

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Free Press Journal