FootballISL 2020

On the Auspicious Mohun Bagan day, Mariners got their biggest surprise

ATK Mohun Bagan media

ATK Mohun Bagan FC captain Roy Krishna has been a maven in Indian football. He finished as the top scorer in ISL 2019-20 with 15 goals, the top scorer and assist maker in ISL 2020-21 as well as the Golden Ball winner.

And now, he has just put pen to paper and signed a brand new contract with ATK Mohun Bagan. Krishna will once again lead the attack for the Green and Maroons and he is already targeting trophies to add to the ISL title he won.

In a big interview to celebrate his new deal, the popular Fijian striker speaks passionately about the support he has received from the club management and, of course, the Green and Maroon fans around the world who have embraced him so warmly this campaign. Following are excerpts:

Q> Congratulations on your new contract, Roy. What convinced you to stay?

Roy Krishna: Since I decided to leave the Pacific and head to India, I’ve felt so much at home with the club and the people of Kolkata. If it wasn’t for the pandemic it would have not needed any convincing but as usual, the club management has gone out of its way to ensure that I and my family would be safe and protected despite the risks of the pandemic and convinced me to stay. I would like to thank Mr. Goenka and his team for keeping the trust in me.

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I would be failing the fans if I didn’t also mention this, but the ATK Mohun Bagan fans have been so supportive and they continue to show me so much love virtually that I feel they are more than just an extension of the club, they are a very integral part of who ATK MOHUN BAGAN is.

Q> How big a factor was Habas in your decision?

Roy Krishna: It’s good to have consistency and knowing that Coach Habas will be there again in my third season is a good indication that the club honors and rewards its hard-working people and I’m grateful to be part of a club that values its people. By keeping us together we are going to grow and build on what we had last season.

Q> We can see on social media you’re one of our most loved players. How does that make you feel?

Roy Krishna: I feel very honored to get so much love and support from our fans. As footballers, one of the highlights of our hard work is having fans appreciate you. ATK Mohun Bagan fans are some of the most supportive fans I’ve ever experienced. Since the first day I arrived in India I’ve been overwhelmed with the love and support I’ve been shown including my family.

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Q> You were the highest scorer last season, the highest assist maker. You won the Golden Ball award. But the team failed to bring back any trophies… Does that motivate you to go further this season?

Roy Krishna: My motivation is always to give my best for the team. I want to help my team win every match and trophy that it competes for. Last season we missed out on the trophies but that is behind us now. Our focus now is what’s ahead of us. The AFC Cup is a big opportunity for us to make a mark in Asia and I’m confident of a good outing in a few week’s time.

Q> A few new signings have been made, most of the players from last season are there. Being the captain, what is your opinion for this season’s team and how do you think you guys will perform?

Roy Krishna: Yes the club has made very good new signings and I’m confident that we will do very well this season. I’m looking forward to training with them and creating some magic when we eventually take on the field.

Q> Looking ahead at the AFC Cup, just how big a challenge is it?

Roy Krishna: Every team that has made it to the AFC Cup has done so on merit so we have a lot of respect for each of these teams. We’ve all worked hard to get here and we will work harder to do our best to win every match. Obviously, our goal is to reach the next stage but we will take each match as they come and go fully prepared. We can’t be complacent and I’m looking forward to joining the team very soon and working with everyone to ensure we bring our best to the Maldives.

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Q> How is the pandemic situation in Fiji? How did you prepare yourself for the upcoming season during the recess?

Roy Krishna: The pandemic in Fiji has become very grave with more cases each day and an increasing number of deaths. As a result, there are a lot of restrictions which include restrictions on movements and sports. I’ve had to train at home which has really limited me but I’ve tried my best to prepare for the AFC Cup.

Q> Lastly, Green and Maroon fans have been waiting to see you in action in front of them. And I am sure you have been waiting to play in front of them. What will be your message for them?

Roy Krishna: It is an honor for me to be continuing with ATK Mohun Bagan and I’m pleased that I can share this good news on this special day with all the fans. I hope they are happy and continue to show their support to the Green and Maroon team.

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