Sanjoy Sen

ATK-Mohun Bagan assistant coach wary of training facilities in ISL

ATK-Mohun Bagan FC assistant coach Sanjoy Sen on Thursday expressed issues round coaching services within the subsequent Indian Super League, which is scheduled to be held behind closed doorways in Goa owing to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The profitable league goes to be staged from November to March in a bio-secure atmosphere in view of the pandemic.

Organisers of the ISL, Football Sports Development Limited (FSDL), are in Goa for a recce of the grounds forward of an official announcement.

“Everyone knows that it will be held in one venue this season and it will be challenging for the coaching staff,” the ATK-Mohun Bagan assistant coach stated throughout a digital session on ‘Sports and COVID’ organised by JIS Group.

Sen stated the three-time defending champions are used to coaching on the Salt Lake Stadium, one thing they must compromise on this season.

“As of now we have had our own infrastructure at Salt Lake Stadium and used that to our advantage. We would train under floodlights from 5 pm to 7 pm. Will we get those facilities in Goa?” Sen requested.

“Moreover, the climate is hot in Goa. It remains to be seen how we get accustomed to the conditions. Hotels and food may not be an issue but practice, ground facilities are our main concerns,” he stated.

The thought behind internet hosting the match in a single state is to minimise journey and play matches in fast successions.

It has been determined that the 10 groups will keep put in a bio-secure atmosphere the place strict well being and security measures can be adopted through the match that may run until March.

Sen stated it could be mentally difficult for the gamers.

“It will be a mental challenge. You have to stay in the bubble, in our room. Team meetings won’t be allowed, there are several things like that which seem challenging.

“So this year, it’s going to be a big, big challenge for us. We have to accept the challenge and go forward in a positive way.” The former Mohun Bagan head coach, who guided them to the I-League and Federation Cup titles between 2014-16, stated they might miss the gang as they play an enormous position in a sport like soccer.

“I remember the reverberations from the tunnel as we walk on to the field especially during a Mohun Bagan-East Bengal derby match. It works as a great motivation. “We played the last ISL final closed door (in March this year). The coach will play a key role in motivating the players,” Sen, who joined ATK as head of youth growth in 2018, stated.

The session additionally featured hockey legend Gurubux Singh and former India wicketkeeper Deep Dasgupta.

The former cricketer-turned-commentator Dasgupta welcomed the return of sports activities in India.

“Let’s be practical and honest, this (pandemic) situation will stay and we have to live with it following the precautions. Sports is an industry in itself, be it ISL, hockey leagues or IPL.

“Not just the sportspersons, the whole industry is involved. It’s an economic activity. I’m happy that sports is returning to India,” Dasgupta stated.