100 years of East Bengal: A timeline

East Bengal, one of India's most successful football clubs completes 100 years on August 1. Here are the key milestones in its history.

Bhaichung Bhutia scores the only Federation Cup derby hat-trick in a 4-1 semifinal win over Mohun Bagan in front of 1.31 lakh spectators at the Salt Lake Stadium.   -  The Hindu Photo Library

East Bengal, one of India's most successful football clubs completes 100 years on August 1. Here are the key milestones in its history.

1920

East Bengal is established on August 1, with Sarada Ranjan Roy as its first president and Suresh Chandra Chowdhury and Tarit Bhusan Roy as joint secretaries.

1921

Wins its first trophy – the Khagendra Shield – and makes its debut in the Calcutta Football League’s (CFL) second division.

1924

Joint winner of the CFL second division with 37 points in 24 matches.

1925

Makes its CFL first division debut. Mona Dutta becomes East Bengal’s first goalscorer in the league.

Wins the first Calcutta derby against Mohun Bagan in the CFL courtesy a Nepal Chakraborty goal.

1928

Is relegated to CFL second division.

1931

Returns to CFL first division.

1936

Beats Mohun Bagan 4-0 in CFL derby – the biggest margin in the tournament’s history. (It repeated the feat in 2015.)

1942

After five unsuccessful attempts (runner-up in 1932, 1933, 1935, 1937 and 1941), East Bengal finally becomes CFL first division champion for the first time. Captain Somana top-scores with 26 goals. (He holds the record for most goals scored for East Bengal in CFL history with 85.)

1943

Wins the IFA Shield for the first time under the leadership of Rakhal Majumder, with Somana netting 11 goals. Somana also becomes the first East Bengal player to score 100 goals.

1945

Wins the CFL and IFA Shield double for the first time with Paritosh Chakraborty as captain. Burmese footballer Fred Pugsley is the top-scorer with 21 goals.

Defeats BCLI Railway 11-0 in the Rovers Cup – still the biggest victory for East Bengal in competitive football. Pugsley’s eight goals are still the highest individual tally in a match in Indian football.

1946

On the way to the league title under the captaincy of Appa Rao, Swami Nayar scores 36 goals, which is still the most in a season in CFL history.

Appa Rao.   -  The Hindu Photo Library

 

1949

Wins the treble of the CFL, IFA Shield and Rovers Cup for the first time.

Defeats Calcutta Garrison 10-0 – East Bengal’s biggest winning margin in the CFL.

The East Bengal team that won the IFA Shield in 1949.   -  The Hindu Photo Library

 

1950

Rise of the Pancha Pandava. The five greats – P. B. A. Saleh, Ahmed Khan, K. P. Dhanaraj, Appa Rao and P. Venkatesh – played together at East Bengal for five years from 1949 to 1953, and all five captained the team in different years. Dhanaraj scored maximum number of goals – 126 – for the club.

Wins the DCM Trophy for the first time, along with CFL and IFA Shield.

1951

Wins the IFA Shield for the third consecutive time. Also lifts the Durand Cup.

1952

Wins the CFL and DCM Trophy. Also wins the Durand Cup for the second straight time.

1953

End of the Pancha Pandava era.

Under the leadership of Ahmed Khan, becomes the first Indian team to tour Europe.

Placed fourth in a Romanian youth football competition.

1956

Wins Durand Cup for the third time.

1957

Wins the Beighton Cup hockey tournament for the first time.

1960

Becomes Bengal Hockey Association league champion for the first time.

1961

Wins CFL title after nine years under captaincy of Tulsidas Balaram, who top-scores with 23 goals.

Tulsidas Balaram.   -  The Hindu Photo Library

 

1963

Sri Lanka’s Selim Noor scores in his very first match for East Bengal – the return game of the CFL derby that East Bengal won 2-0.

1966

Wins the CFL-IFA Shield double for the fifth time.

1967

Wins the first-ever CFL derby played at Eden Gardens 2-1.

1968

Wins the Sait Nagjee football tournament and Bordoloi Trophy each for the first time.

The Sait Nagjee trophy.   -  The Hindu Photo Library

 

1970

Defeats Iranian club PAS Tehran courtesy a last-minute goal by Parimal Dey to win the IFA Shield.

1972

Wins the first triple crown in Indian football history – IFA Shield, Durand Cup and Rovers Cup (jointly won).

Wins the CFL title without conceding a single goal.

Wins a total of five trophies with an unbeaten record in the season under the captaincy of Sudhir Karmakar and coaching of Pradip Banerjee.

Coach Pradip Banerjee (right).   -  The Hindu Photo Library

 

1973

Defeats Pyongyang City of North Korea to win the IFA Shield.

Wins a total of five trophies – CFL, IFA Shield, Rovers Cup, DCM Trophy and Bordoloi Trophy.

Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw presents the Durand Cup trophy for 1973 to the skipper of the East Bengal team.   -  The Hindu Photo Library

 

1975

Lifts the CFL title for the sixth consecutive time, winning every game in 1975.

Defeats Mohun Bagan 5-0 in the IFA Shield final – the biggest victory margin in derby history.

Wins both the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) senior league and senior-division knockout tournament jointly with Mohun Bagan.

1976

Wins the IFA Shield for the fifth consecutive time.

1977

Wins all its matches on its way to the CFL title.

1978

Wins the Federation Cup for the first time (jointly with Mohun Bagan).

1980

Majid Bishkar and Jamshid Nassiri play for East Bengal for the first time. Joint winner of the Federation Cup (with Mohun Bagan) and Rovers Cup (with Mohammedan Sporting).

Majid Bishkar (right) and Jamshid Nassiri.   -  Rajeev Bhatt

 

1984

Defeats Mohun Bagan 1-0 in the first-ever derby at the Salt Lake Stadium, with Kartik Sett scoring the only goal.

Kartik Sett.   -  The Hindu Photo Library

 

1985

Wins the Federation Cup individually for the first time.

Top its group in the Asian Club Championship, scoring 20 goals and conceding none in five games in Sri Lanka.

With the Federation Cup trophy.   -  The Hindu Photo Library

 

1990

Under the coaching of Naeemuddin, wins the triple crown of Indian football for the second time.

Coach Naeemuddin.   -  The Hindu Photo Library

 

1991

Becomes CFL champions for the second time without conceding a goal.

Wins the Durand Cup for the third time in a row.

1993

Becomes champion of the Wai Wai Cup, played in Nepal.

1995

Wins the CFL, IFA Shield, Durand Cup and All Airlines Gold Cup.

1997

Bhaichung Bhutia scores the only Federation Cup derby hat-trick in a 4-1 semifinal win over Mohun Bagan in front of 1.31 lakh spectators at the Salt Lake Stadium.

2000-01

Wins the National Football League (NFL) title for the first time.

2002-03

Wins its second NFL title.

2003

Wins the ASEAN Club Championship in Jakarta. Bhutia scores five goals in a 6-0 win over Philippine Army in the tournament – the only hat-trick by an Indian in international club football.

2003-04

Wins the NFL title for the third time.

2004

Lifts its 16th Durand Cup.

2004-2005

Wins the San Miguel International Cup in Nepal.

2010

Wins the CFL title for the first of eight consecutive times.

2011

Defeats HAL 8-1 – East Bengal’s biggest victory margin in NFL/I-League competition.

2012

Lifts eighth Federation Cup title.

2013

Reaches the semifinals of the AFC Cup.

East Bengal in action against Kuwait SC in the 2013 AFC Cup.   -  The Hindu Photo Library

 

2016

Becomes CFL champion by winning all its matches for the third time (after 1975 and ’77.)

2017

Wins its eighth consecutive CFL title, breaking its own record of six between 1970 and ’75.

(Compiled by: Hari Prasad Chattopadhyay)