All is not well within the East Bengal ranks as the players seemed to be not on the same page with their newly-appointed Brazilian coach Marcos Falopa's disciplinarian approach and tactical methods.
Senior East Bengal player and now assistant coach Alvito D'Cunha has confirmed this even as the club management rubbished the reports.
"I cannot deny that the players are not happy with the coach's method's and techniques. The players' were terribly unhappy after yesterday's practice," Alvito was quoted saying in the media referring to an impromptu meeting by the players after Falopa left the practice at the Salt Lake Stadium on Wednesday.
Alvito, however, added that things had not spiralled out of control as senior players like Uga Okpara and Edeh Chidi were trying to douse the fire.
"The senior players are playing an active role to sort out the issues. The coach needs some time to settle down and the players' too need more time to adjust to his ways."
The high-profile Falopa, who joined a little over two months back, has a big shoe to fill at the red and gold camp as the club had performed exceedingly well under Englishman Trevor Morgan who left after a three-season stint.
"Morgan was the players' coach. He was like a friend and the camp used to be full of fun," a senior player said. Things, however, have changed after Falopa took over, the player said.
"What irks most in the coach is changing the usual playing positions like making somebody play from left back to central back which is unsettling. He is yet to realise our strengths and weaknesses," he added.
Rubbishing the reports, East Bengal secretary Kalyan Majumdar told PTI: "These are totally false and baseless and reflects malicious intentions. It's unfair to remark on somebody without seeing his team play a match."
East Bengal are yet to play a competitive match this season which will begin with local league matches next month followed by the AFC Cup quarters against Indonesia's Semen Padang on September 17.