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I-League Media

Mohun Bagan dash letters to AIFF after refereeing howlers, slam poor officiating standards

Written by: Uttiyo Sarkar

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The Mariners have also demanded that they be awarded three points for the game away to Chennai City.

The game involving Chennai City FC and Mohun Bagan on 7th of February will be memorable because of its comical turn of events towards the end, where a player was wrongfully sent off by the referee Akash Jackson Routh. Edwin Vanspaul was sent off in the 85th minute after receiving a yellow card, while Tarif Akhand, who had received two yellow cards in the game, remained on the pitch.

While the erroneous behavior of the officials couldn't stop the teams from playing out a 0-0 draw and splitting points at the end, Mohun Bagan look to be especially livid with the incident which they allege cost them all three points on the day. While the Mariners had gotten a penalty prior to the sending off and Akram Mohgrabi failed to convert that one, their officials seem to be disappointed at how the AIFF has managed the whole situation.

In a letter penned by Bagan Director Debashis Dutta to I-League CEO Sunando Dhar, the Mariners have lodged a complaint stating their dismay at how the proceedings went after the Disciplinary Committee meeting which took place a few days after their draw against Chennai.  

Mohun Bagan stated how they thought that Tarif Akhand should've been the player to be sent off after fouling Dipanda Dicka in the 80th minute and getting his second yellow card. Not only were they perplexed at how that didn't happen, the Mariners have expressed their shock at how Edwin Vanspaul was cleared to play Chennai's next match (against Aizawl) after being sent off against the Mariners. This is despite the fact that Edwin should never have been sent off with the referee's errors leading to Akhand escaping a ban instead.

The Letter penned by the Mariners.

To make things even more comical, The Mariners actually have demanded the AIFF to reward their team for the official's gaffe and give them all three points from that fixture.

Not only are they confident in penning the letter demanding for points which they never earned, but they seem to be intent at getting the points which they think could give them a shot at getting back in the title race. This embarrassing behavior from the club just proves how low they've fallen as a team this season and are desperate to use any ways necessary to keep themselves in the I-League title race.

Despite having one of the arguably best squads in the league, Bagan have failed to compete at the top and have dropped points to "minnows" on more than one occasion in this season. Them stating that they deserve to get 3 points for a game where both teams were effected due to a poor referee shows their arrogance even in this average period for the team.


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Rather than trying to demand points of the AIFF, the Mariners could've lodged an official complain to the Referee's Association of India. They could've even asked for a rematch between the two teams with a better official overseeing anything erroneous from happening. Them taking a cheap way out of trying to leverage an outcome with the AIFF has a sense of desperation which isn't expected from the Kolkata Giants.

But it seems like the Mariners weren't just satisfied with the one letter and they sent one more after their shocking loss to Gokulam Kerala on Monday. This time the letter addresses the General Secretary of the AIFF, Mr. Kushal Das and further states of the club's shocked at how the referee's decision in the Chennai City game was revoked. Furthermore, Bagan also seems to have problems with the refereeing in their loss to Gokulam Kerala and state their dismay in this letter.

The letter states that the Mariners had a hunch that things could go astray in their game against Gokulam due to the referee being from the Southern part of India. Bagan blames Mr. Palmson Raj for being ahead of the play in an attempt to keep up and making many errors in the game. Bagan state that the referee often didn't let them continue playing their advantage by awarding needless free-kicks and denying them opportunities to attack.

The Mariners also thrash the referee at not awarding them a penalty in the first half and wrongfully booking Dipanda Dicka. The letter furthermore states at how the poor refereeing is making their game "lose its charm" when the Mariners just weren't good enough to win either against Chennai nor Kerala.

This second letter was sent to the AIFF on Tuesday

The letter signs off by Bagan wanting football to be played in its true spirit, but they are showing no good spirits at all and are only embarrassing themselves further by sending these needless letters.

While their rivals East Bengal overcame the terrible refereeing in their victory against Minerva Punjab which took them a step closer to the title, Mohun Bagan has proved their own downfall as a club by pulling off these kind of comical antics.

The Mariners even thinking that the AIFF would actually reward them for 3 points due to an officials mistake is embarrassing and proves their desperation for wanting to remain in the I-League title race despite not being good enough to win games on their own.

Published: Wed Feb 14, 2018 03:41 PM IST

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