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Kerala Blasters, Bengaluru United to debut in Durand Cup 2021

Kerala Blasters and Bengaluru United are two of the 16 teams invited to play


Indian Super League clubs Kerala Blasters and Bengaluru FC will mark their debut in the 130th edition of the Durand Cup 2021 to be held in Kolkata between September 5 and October 3.

Hosted by the Durand Football Tournament Society (DFTS), it is an initiative of the Indian Army which began in 1888. The champion of the Durand Cup would receive three unique trophies: The President’s Cup, The Durand Cup and The Shimla Trophy.

The venues identified for the iconic tournament in Kolkata are Vivekananda Yuva Bharati Krirangan (VYBK), Mohun Bagan Club Ground, and Kalyani Municipal Stadium Ground.

‘We are very pleased to participate in this year's Durand Cup,” said Blasters head coach Ivan Vukomanović. “Hope that we will have good games ahead as it is very important to play games in this part of pre-season. The tournament format could be an extra motivation for our players because we like to compete.”

Kerala Blasters and Bengaluru United are two of the 16 teams invited to play in Asia's oldest football competition, which is returning after a one-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 16 teams in the Durand Cup include five clubs from the ISL, six clubs from the Indian Armed Forces, three clubs from the I-League and two clubs from the I-League 2nd Division.

"It's a great honour for FC Bengaluru United to be invited to participate in the Durand Cup and we couldn't be more delighted," said Gaurav Manchanda, Owner, FC Bengaluru United in a media release.

"The Durand Cup is a marquee event in the Indian footballing calendar, and we are proud to be part of it. It is also a testimony to the growing potential of FC Bengaluru United.

Bengaluru United are in Group A along with tough opponents Mohammedan Sporting Club, Central Reserve Police Force Football Club and Indian Air Force.

The I-League 2nd Division side displayed stellar form in domestic competitions earlier this year, which saw them being crowned BDFA Super Division Champions.

"We are prepared to bring through strong performances to merit our inclusion," said Richard Hood, head coach, FC Bengaluru United.  


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