Interview: Dipendu Biswas24-Jul, 2012
Dipendu Biswas, perhaps the best Bengali striker after Sisir Ghosh, has joined McDowell Mohun Bagan this year. This will be his 6th year with the club. Dipendu has decided that he will be retiring from McDowell Mohun Bagan. He was part of the McDowell Mohun Bagan team which won the National Football League in 1997 and 1999. He considers 1997 to be the best season with the club.
MMB: Welcome once again to McDowell Mohun Bagan Dipendu.
Dipendu: Thanks a lot. I am also very happy to be back in McDowell Mohun Bagan.
MMB: There was a report in media that this will be your last year and that you have joined Mohun Bagan to retire from this club.
Dipendu: No, this is partially correct. Yes, I have decided that I will be retiring from Mohun Bagan, but I haven't yet decided whether that will be this season or may be 1-2 seasons later.
b>MMB: How many years have you played in Mohun Bagan?
Dipendu: This is my 6th year in Mohun Bagan. I played in Mohun Bagan in 1996, 1997, 1999, 2005 and 2006.
MMB: How confident are you about your form, considering the fact that there are a lot of junior players in the team?
Dipendu: I am confident that I will be able to continue scoring goals. I am working hard in the preseason training. To remain fit during the offseason, I was practicing in SAI.
MMB: How is the preseason training going on? How do you rate the team this year?
Dipendu: I am really enjoying the residential training camp under Coach Santosh Kashyap that is going on in Durgapur.
I think we have a very good team this season with good mixture of senior and junior players. The foreign players recruited are also very good. I have seen Eche and Stanley, both are good players. The combination of Tolgay and Odafa, I think, will help us win a lot of matches this year. Their playing style is different. Odafa is basically a scorer who operates down the middle while Tolgay can also run down the flanks and has very good speed.
Last year I was an expert commentator for News Time Channel and I saw many players closely. Mohun Bagan has recruited many good players like Warundeep Singh, Arjun Chatterjee, Khelemba Singh, Aibor, Denson Devadas etc.
MMB: What will be your target this season?
Dipendu: As a striker, my target is always to score goals. Whichever match I get a chance, I will try to score goals and help my team win that match.
MMB: Will you be wearing the No. 10 Jersey this season?
Dipendu: I have mostly worn the No. 10 jersey in my career. After Jose Barreto came to play in McDowell Mohun Bagan, I started wearing Jersey No. 8, though this year I will be wearing No. 11 jersey.
MMB: Say something about the 3 strikers, Roshan Perreira, Chima Okorie and Jose Barreto with whom you have played in Mohun Bagan?
Dipendu: Roshan Perreira was a very good striker. His scoring ability and covering was very good, but he was a bit undisciplined.
Jose Barreto, I feel, is one of the best foreign players to have ever played in Indian football. He showed his class from the very 1st season itself. He is not only a great scorer but also can play from a little deep.
Chima Okorie is one of my favourite players. He is also an extremely good human being. He was always very involved with the team. In 1997, when there was a bit of a problem in the team during Rovers Cup due to which Amal Dutta was sacked, Chima at that time had gone to London, though he came back again at the start of the National League. I still think if Chima had been there, he would have solved the problem and Amal Dutta would have remained our coach.
In 1997 Calcutta Football League, we were playing the last match against Eastern Railways. Mohun Bagan needed to win that match to clinch the title. Myself and Chima at that time had scored same number of goals. Mohun Bagan got a penalty in the 2nd half. Chima did not take the shot and instead asked me to take the penalty. I scored from the penalty and became the highest scorer. Basudev Mondal scored another goal in that match and we won the Calcutta Football League.
MMB: Best of luck for the season Dipendu.
Dipendu: Thank you.
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