Atletico de Kolkata, abbreviated as ATK, is the first team in the India Super League Football Franchise. The team is owned by Kolkata Games & Sports Pvt Ltd. It is the first team to win the ISL champions title and has proudly held it for two years.
Atletico de Kolkata is the ISL football team based in Kolkata, West Bengal. In Mar 2014, All India Football Federation announced for the bids of ownership for eight teams for Indian Super League, a football league, which was modeled on the lines of Indian Premier League for cricket. Former Indian cricket team Captain Saurav Ganguly, Spanish club Atletico Madrid, Harshvardhan Neotia, Sanjiv Goenka and Utsav Parekh partnered under Kolkata Games & Sports Pvt Ltd and won the bid for Kolkata team for 18 Crores. Since then Atletico de Kolkata News has been buzzing because of its performances, transfers, and signings.
The team was officially launched on 7th of May 2014. The jersey and logo of the team were unveiled on 7th of July 2014 by Chief Minister of West Bengal Mrs. Mamata Banerjee. The logo is Royal Bengal Tiger besides a Phoenix symbolizing the perpetual love for the sport of Kolkatans.
Real Madrid midfielder Borja Fernandes was the first player to be signed by the team after it was launched. Furthermore, it signed Antonio Lopez Habas as head coach and marquee player and former UEFA Champions League winner Luis Garcia in the month of July. The team kept on picking Cavin Lobo, Sanju Pradhan, Josemi and Mamunul Islam.
The team played its first match on 12th Oct 2014 at home against Mumbai City FC. It won the match with Fikru Tefera scoring the first ever goal for the team. It became the first champions of ISL. It was one of the semi- finalists in the season in the year 2015.
ISL Champions Twice
In the history of Indian Super League, out of 3 seasons, Atletico de Kolkata has been the only team to win the Champions title twice. The team and the players contribute their win to the consistency, ability to handle pressure and dedication with which they play. The team showed a stubbornness to give up resulting in consistent win throughout the season and become the champions. Antonio Lopez Habas was instrumental in the win as the head coach in the season 2014. The transition to Jose Francisco Molina as the head coach in the season 2016 was smooth which did not affect the performance of the players.
Players of the Team
The team has strong players like Iain Hume, Jose Luis Espinosa Arroyo, Sameehg Doutie, Oftense Nato, Arnab Mondal, Jewel Raja, Borja Fernandez, Helder Postiga and Javi Lara. Borja Fernandez was awarded the fittest player in the ISL 2016. Sameehg Doutie won the winning pass of the tournament in ISL 2016.
Current status of the Squad
Many key players like Iain Hume, Helder Postiga, Javi Lara, Tiri and Sameehg Doutie were transferred to the squad last year. The contract of many players has ended in Dec 2016. There might be new entries as well transfers for the next season. Keep a check on the Atletico de Kolkata News to find out the new entrants in the next season.
The team has many players who are there in the squad since the team played its first season. The transfer may happen. The primary focus of the team has always been to improve the performance and deliver their best to justify their support they are getting from their fans and sponsors.