The Prince of Kolkata Sourav Ganguly hailed the merger between Atletico de Kolkata and I-league side Mohun Bagan as a momentous partnership as RP Sanjiv Goenka Group, the owners of Indian Super League club ATK FC confirmed on Thursday. Sourav Ganguly took to Twitter to exude with confidence that he was sure that the merger would help Indian football move forward and develop better.The clubs will come over as one merged identity and will have brand names of ATK and Mohun Bagan.The conglomerate will be the majority owner with 80% of the share, whereas the remaining 20% will be owned by Mohun Bagan Football Club (India) Private Limited. The deal will come into effect from June 1, 2020, and the team will compete in the 2020-21 Indian Super League season, among other competitions.
Swapan Bose, Chairman of MBFC said, "As much as we want the romance of the Maroon and Green jersey and it’s 130-year-old tradition to continue, there comes a time when romance almost invariably requires a partner named practicality. To usher into the new era of football, you need bigger investments and a corporate force to take it forward. This is undoubtedly a harsh and the bigger truth. I can assure millions and millions of Bagan supporters spread across the globe, that the poetry will continue. Now that the prose is ready to lend a helping hand."
Sanjiv Goenka, on the other hand, said, "RPSG Group which has a 200-year-old legacy is humbled and honoured to welcome Mohun Bagan with folded hands and open arms to the RPSG family. RPSG Group is known for acquiring and growing legacies such as the 120-year-old CESC, 150-year-old Spencer’s Retail, and the 100-year-old Saregama. Personally, it’s an emotional reunion for me as my father Late Shri R P Goenka was a member of Mohun Bagan.” ATK was previously partly owned by Spanish football club Atletico Madrid and was called Atlético de Kolkata. However, that partnership broke in 2017. The development comes weeks after City Football Group (CFG) announced that it had taken over a majority stake of Mumbai City FC. The group owns 65% of the club now.