East Bengal to feature in ISL 2021-22 as Shree Cement agrees to continue partnership

A spokesperson of the Rajasthan-based manufacturer confirmed the development at a press conference organised by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

East Bengal fans

East Bengal fans during a protest against managing authorities of the club in Kolkata on July 21.   -  PTI

The clouds of uncertainty hovering over the continuance of the agreement between East Bengal Club and its investor Shree Cement were cleared on Wednesday after West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee intervened to bring the conflicting parties together, allowing the club to participate in the upcoming edition of the Indian Super League (ISL).

Shree Cement, which in a letter addressed to Banerjee had intimated its desire to pull out of the one-year-old deal a couple of days ago, has now decided to continue with the agreement.

The announcement was made by the West Bengal Chief Minister at her Government's headquarters, Nabanna, after the representatives of the club and Shree Cement pledged to continue with the agreement at a meeting convened at her behest.

“I was quite annoyed with them (Shree Cement) when they wrote to me stating their desire to pull out of the agreement. I then requested them to continue for the sake of the millions of East Bengal fans who will be greatly distressed if the team fails to play the ISL this season. Teams like East Bengal and Mohun Bagan have great brand value with supporters spread all over the world. Congratulations to East Bengal now that Shree Cement has decided to continue,” Banerjee told the media after her meeting with the representatives of the club and the investor.

RELATED| East Bengal, Shree Cement part ways; West Bengal CM disappointed with development

"We also want the games to happen. Due to certain reasons, we couldn't sign the final term sheet. We were trying since the past year to make things work. However, since you have requested we will be participating in this year's ISL," said a spokesperson of the Rajasthan-based manufacturer.

Senior East Bengal official Debabrata Sarkar said, "Didi (Banerjee) has always been with us. We were able to install floodlights at the club grounds because of her support. Just like last year, this year too Didi has helped us come out of a tough spot. We thank her and SCL. Khela hobe! (We look forward to participating in the ISL)."

RELATED| East Bengal in crisis after investor pulls out

The two parties have been at loggerheads since the club officials had put up a fresh list of demands and refused to sign the final contract after giving its consent in the term sheet when the agreement was signed last year. It is not immediately clear whether the investor has agreed to the conditions set by the officials of the legacy club, who had been asking the the investor to to comply with their demands before they signed the final agreement.

With the international transfer window closing at the end of the month, the club will now be in a race against time to bolster its squad. SC East Bengal, coached by Liverpool legend Robbie Fowler, had finished ninth out of 11 teams in the last season of the ISL.

For more updates, follow Sportstar on :