ATK Mohun Bagan linked with move for Mario Mandzukic

Croatian great Mario Mandzukic has been linked with a move to Indian Super League side ATK Mohun Bagan.
Croatian great Mario Mandzukic has been linked with a move to Indian Super League side ATK Mohun Bagan. / BSR Agency/Getty Images

Indian Super League club ATK Mohun Bagan's reported interest in former AC Milan striker Mario Mandzukic has been quite a story this week.

The 35-year-old veteran striker's time with AC Milan came to an end in May, with the Italian outfit choosing not to extend his contract.

Croatia's public broadcaster HRT recently reported that Mandzukic has already received an offer from ATK Mohun Bagan, and added that the player is "looking forward to the opportunity to play in India".

However, Times of India sports editor Marcus Merghulhao has reported these rumours to be false.

After making a name for himself at Bayern Munich, Mandzukic went on to play for big clubs like Atletico Madrid, Juventus and Milan.

ATK Mohun Bagan already have one of the most consistent goalscorers in the league in the form of Roy Krishna.

The news of Mandzukic's transfer not happening will definitely come as a blow to Indian football fans who were anticipating an announcement in due course.

Moreover, it comes at a time when disagreements between ATK Mohun Bagan fans and the club's management continued to grow even a year after the two clubs (ATK FC and Mohun Bagan) merged into one.

The Mariners' fans have been quite vocal on Twitter since last season and they continue to demand the club to remove 'ATK' from their team name.

This had led to a major fan protest on Twitter with '#RemoveATK' trending across India on June 24. A large number of fan groups threatened to boycott the team's games too.

They demanded the club remove the three stars signifying the three ISL titles ATK FC won as they don't apply to the newly formed team. Eventually, the club removed it from their logo and kits.

The club have tried to appease fans by highlighting the club's rich history on their website, but on the other hand, have continued to proceed with business as usual despite widespread opposition.