Some of the payers involved in the scandal have played for Kolkata’s big clubs.
The Calcutta Football League which is considered as Asia’s oldest league holds a special place in every football lover’s heart, especially in the state of West Bengal. But, the latest news surrounding the championship and some of its players has come as a shock, to say the least.
Some of the league’s most reputed players have been named in an alleged match-fixing scandal in the prestigious competition. Former Mohun Bagan and United SC player, Suraj Mondal was caught in a conversation with a Tollygunge Agragami player.
The conversation was over a phone call, where Suraj was heard saying, “If you leave one or two matches in the tournament, then no-one will know. No one cares if your team is winning by three or four goals. Allow the opponent to score one after the 75-minute mark, that way the betting is done. Leave a goal and get around ₹5 lakhs.” The whole conversation was made viral by reputed Bengali news portal News 18 Bengali in their latest video.
News18 Bangla’s coverage of the match-fixing scandal
The veteran player was very confident of the betting system at Maidan and even claimed that it has been going on for the last 3-4 years. In the conversation, he also mentions the names of other veteran players like Deepak Mondal and Rakesh Masih, whom he claimed were also involved in the wrongdoings. Both Mondal and Masih have even donned the national colours and if found guilty this will be a big shock, for not only Kolkata Maidan, but also the whole football fraternity in the country.
The match which was allegedly set to be fixed was a highly-anticipated fixture in the CFL Premier Division, between Tollygunge Agragami and Pathachakra.
The most shocking revelation was when, Suraj, in his phone conversation, mentioned the names of reputed players like Mondal and Masih, along with Shyam Mondal and Nashim Akhtar. Both Deepak Mondal and Masih are playing for Agragami in this year’s CFL Premier Division.
Deepak Mondal is a very reputed defender, not only in West Bengal, but also all over the country. He has plied his trade for big clubs like JCT, Mahindra United, Mohun Bagan and East Bengal in the I-league and even in teams like Mumbai City and Kerala Blasters in the Indian Super League. Mondal has been one of the household names in Kolkata Maidan, especially because of his stints with two of the biggest teams in Kolkata.
On the other hand, experienced midfielder Masih is also an eminent name in Kolkata Maidan. The 31-year-old has represented clubs like Mohun Bagan, Mohammedan Sporting, ATK and so on, besides making five appearances for the national team. The revelation of his involvement in the fixing scandal is very shocking and something which the football lovers in Kolkata and also in India didn’t expect at all.
There is definitely scope for further investigation into the revelations by the Indian Football Association and hopefully strict action will be taken if the above-mentioned names are found guilty.