The long-serving Red and Gold midfielder was speaking at the launch of the top flight’s new season in the capital on Tuesday.
At the official launch of the I-League 2018-19, East Bengal player Lalrindika Ralte dropped an Easter egg for the people present, hinting towards his club’s inclusion in next season’s Indian Super League (ISL). Speaking in a round of introduction he said that this might be the last chance for his team to win the league.
Ralte has been with the club since 2012 and East Bengal have never won the I-League. There were rounds of talks regardinging the Red and Gold’s inclusion into the cash-rich league’s fold ahead of the ongoing campaign and the midfield ace has hinted the move could be close.
He, in his exact words said, “एसा लग्ता है की अगले सीजन आईएसएल मे खेलेगा एसा सुना है तो हम लोगो का आखिरी मौका है जीतेने का|”(Quoted in Hindi)
It roughly translates to the assertion that East Bengal could play in the ISL next season and that this is the last chance for the club to win the coveted top flight title.
Subrata Dutta, AIFF: We are thinking of restructuring of the leagues. Will be considering every league to look at the bigger picture. We should include ISL, I-League in this reform to help the national team. It is high time.#indianfootball #HeroILeague #ILeagueIConquer
— Khel Now (@KhelNow) October 23, 2018
Before that, Subrata Dutta, the Sr. Vice-President of AIFF said that they are thinking of restructuring the current football pyramid to make it a bit unified.
He can be seen saying the word here
Last season, Bengaluru FC switched ships from the I-league to the ISL and went to outperform every team in the league stage. They ended up being the runners-up, losing the final 2-3 in their own backyard to eventual champions chennaiyin FC.