Kolkata:Brazilian football legend Pele will relive the moments he had in the city 38 years ago when he will visit Eden Gardens before felicitating the 1977 batch of Mohun Bagan team, who had the fortune of playing against the Black Pearl’s New York Cosmos at the 80,000-capacity stadium. Detailing out his three-day stay in city before he heads to New Delhi, the organisers today said Pele will attend a star-studded Legend’s Night with West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and former India captain Sourav Ganguly.
The Subrata Bhattacharya-led Mohun Bagan team that played out a 2-2 draw against New York Cosmos on that historic day of September 24, 1977 will also be present at the Legend’s Night’ at the Netaji Indoor Stadium on October 12.
Pele will take a detour of Eden Gardens en route to the Netaji Indoor Stadium as the Cricket Association of Bengal will felicitate the Brazilian legend in a royal manner. “It’s really unfortunate that we have lost our president Jagmohan Dalmiya who would have felicitated Pele ahead of his 75th birthday on October 23. But we’ll do our best and do it in such a royal manner that his return to the Eden will leave a lasting impression,” CAB treasurer Biswarup Dey said at the announcement.
In a video message, Pele has said: “I’m looking forward to my visit to Kolkata after 38 years, and during the time of Durga Puja.” According to the organisers, city entrepreneur Satadru Dutta had met Pele twice to chalk out the plan to bring him to Kolkata 38 years after he had charmed the football lovers. “There had been apprehension regarding his health as he had a back surgery but having met him I can assure you that he’s in perfect health and there’s no concern. In a lighter vein, he told me, ‘I can still score goals if you stand under the bar’,” Dutta told reporters.