KOLKATA: Former champion Mohun Bagan will take on the I-League runner-up Churchill Brothers in the opening match of the 113th edition of the IFA Shield football, which gets underway at the Salt Lake Stadium on Wednesday.
The tournament, which has been carried over from 2007, has a competitive field with defending champion Mahindra United leading the challenge. East Bengal and Mohammedan Sporting are two other local sides, which are joined by two foreign outfits — Santos FC of South Africa and Dhaka Mohammedan Sporting, Bangladesh.
The tournament will be played in a league-cum-knockout format. Mahindra United has East Bengal and Santos as company in Group A while Bagan and Churchill are grouped with the two Mohammedan Sportings in group B. — Principal Correspondent