Then, Now, Forever – Our Timeline
East Bengal Club was established on 1st August, 1920 by Suresh Chandra Chaudhury along with some other dignitaries. Our first captain was Ramesh Chandra Sen.
The Club tent was established at the Maidan, Kolkata (then Calcutta) and we also became a member of the Indian Football Association's governing body. The East Bengal and Cameroons ‘B’ emerged as the joint champions of the Second Division. We scored our 100th goal (S. Mitra) vs. Jorabagan when we drew with them 1-1 in the Second Division.
We received the IFA Governing Body’s approval and were promoted to the First Division. In the first match, we lost to Calcutta FC 1-4. Mona Datta scored the goal and became the Club’s first goal scorer in Calcutta Football League’s First Division. The Club’s first win was registered in the third match when we beat Dalhousie 2-1, with Mona Datta scoring both goals.
After being relegated in 1928, East Bengal became champions of the Second Division and were promoted once again to the First Division.
We defeated Mohun Bagan with a record 4-0 scoreline in the Calcutta Football Club, with Lakshminarayan, Majid and Prasad scoring. The record stands to this day. We also registered our highest victory margin in the IFA Shield when we beat Victoria Sporting 9-0.
We made our maiden appearance in the Rovers Cup in Bombay.
We won the Calcutta Football League Championship for the first time. We also made our maiden entry to the final of the IFA Shield to finish as runners-up.
East Bengal won the IFA Shield for the first time, beating Police AC 3-0 in the final. Somana became the first player to score 100 goals for the Club. He achieved the feat against B & A Railway in the IFA Shield on 13 August.
East Bengal won the Double for the first time, winning both the Calcutta Football League and IFA Shield. In the Shield final, we defeated Mohun Bagan 1-0 (Pugsley). The first foreign player for the Club was Fred Pugsley (Burma). We also recorded our highest victory margin when we defeated BCIL Railway 11-0 in the Rovers Cup, with Pugsley scoring 8 goals – an individual record.
East Bengal defeated the Chinese Olympic XI 2-0 in an exhibition match. The scorers were Appa Rao and P.B.A. Saleh.
We won the ‘triple crown’ for the first time – the Calcutta Football League, the IFA Shield and the Rovers Cup, winning the last trophy for the first time. The Durand Cup was not held that year. We also scored 111 goals (100+ goals) for the first time in a season.
East Bengal became the first Indian team to do the Delhi Double, winning the Durand Cup and the DCM Trophy. Vice-Captain Ahmed Khan scored India’s only goal at the Helsinki Olympics against Yugoslavia. Legendary long-distance runner Emile Zatopek and his wife Dana visited the Club.
East Bengal became the first Indian team to tour Europe. Led by Ahmed Khan, we finished fourth in the Romanian Youth Tournament at Bucharest and drew with a star-studded Moscow Torpedo 3-3 at Moscow. Tenzing Norgay, the first man to summit Mt. Everest, visited the Club.
Under the leadership of T. Balaram, we regained the Calcutta Football League with a young team after a gap of nine years. We went on to do the double when we shared the IFA Shield with Mohun Bagan. Balaram was the top scorer in the League with 23 goals. Sushil Bhattacharya became the first coach of the Club. Nilesh Sarkar scored the 2000th goal for us on 15 November in our 3-1 triumph over Gorkha Brigade in the Durand Cup at New Delhi
East Bengal defeated PAS Club (Iran) 1-0, courtesy Parimal Dey’s goal in the IFA Shield final and became the first team in India to win the Shield by beating a foreign team in the final after India’s independence.
East Bengal defeated two North Korean sides, Pyongyang City Club and Dok Ro Gang, in the successive finals of the IFA Shield and the DCM trophy.
We won the Calcutta Football League after winning all our matches, thereby becoming the first Indian team to achieve this feat. We also established the record of winning the League six times in a row. In the IFA Shield final, we beat Mohun Bagan by a record margin of 5-0. Ranjit Mukherjee scored the 3,000th goal for us when he scored the opener in our 2-0 win over Sporting Union in the Calcutta Football League.
History repeats itself! We once again won the Calcutta Football League after winning all our matches.
The first Derby at the Salt Lake Stadium was held on 28 September. We beat Mohun Bagan 1-0, courtesy of Kartick Sett’s goal in that game.
East Bengal won the Triple Crown – the IFA Shield, the Durand Cup and the Rovers Cup.
We won our first foreign title when we won the Wai Wai Cup at Kathmandu. We also defeated Al-Zawra (Iraq) by a record 6-2 margin in the first leg of the Asian Cup Winners Cup at Calcutta. Carlton Chapman scored three goals, while Aqueel Ansari, Sisir Ghosh and Kumaresh Bhawal scored one each. We won the first round 6-4 on aggregate. We also won the Kalinga Cup for the first time.
We qualified for the maiden Phillips National Football League (NFL) and finished third. Our first win in the NFL was on 2 February, when we defeated Salgaocar Football Club 3-0 (Raman Vijayan, Amit Das, A.Sarvanan). The Club also won the Super Cup for the first time.
We won all the five competitions we played that year – the National Football League, the Calcutta Football League, the IFA Shield, the Durand Cup and the Independence Day Cup.
The Red-and-Golds won the LG ASEAN Club Cup at Jakarta, defeating BEC Tero Sasana (Thailand) 3-1 in the final. We also won the National Football League for the second year running.
Former FIFA President Joseph Blatter along with AFC President Md. Bin Hammam visited the Club.
We became the first Indian team to beat a team from West Asia on home soil when we defeated Al Wehdat Club (Jordan) 2-0 at Amman in the AFC Cup Group League. Ike Ibe Gift and Alvito D’Cunha scored for us.
Brazilian football legend Zico visited the Club in December.
We qualified for the AFC Cup for a record eighth time. We repeated our highest Derby winning margin from 1936 when we defeated Mohun Bagan 4-0 in the CFL, which we won six years in a row (2010-15), thus repeating our own record from 1970-75. We also recorded our 200th win in the NFL/Hero I-League when we defeated Salgaocar Football Club 1-0 on 22 April, a feat not achieved by any other club before or since.
We won the CFL for a record eight years in a row (2010-17). The Club also became the first to record 100 wins in the Hero I-League.
We celebrated our centenary year. The Club entered the Hero Indian Super League for the first time.
Kolkata-based diversified business conglomerate Emami Group comes aboard as the Club’s investor.