Morgan and East Bengal players face unprecedented protest

Around 200 partisan supporters laid siege to the club on Friday demanding his exit.

East Bengal players faced the wrath of the supporters after the team fell behind in the race for the I-League title following a 1-2 loss against traditional rival Mohun Bagan last Sunday. (File photo)   -  M. Vedhan

East Bengal coach Trevor Morgan faced one of the most bitter protests in his long coaching career with the team when around 200 partisan supporters laid siege to the club on Friday demanding his exit.

Morgan and his players faced the wrath of the supporters after the team fell behind in the race for the I-League title following a 1-2 loss against traditional rival Mohun Bagan last Sunday.

Chanting “Go back Morgan”, the supporters gave vent to their exasperation by mobbing the coach and the players as they tried to make their way out of the club after the day’s practice, ahead of the team’s upcoming I-League match against DSK Shivajians on Sunday.

The fans also targeted East Bengal goalkeeper T.P. Rehenesh, accusing him of being responsible for the three successive losses the team suffered before falling behind in the title race. The goalkeeper had apparently made some foul gestures, instigating the irate mob.

East Bengal, which last won the National Football League (the former name of I-League) in the 2003-04 season, was a strong contender for the title before suffering a string of losses. Morgan had a lot of difficulty in getting past the crowd of unruly supporters, who blocked his way demanding an explanation. After being allowed to reach his car, the Perth-based English coach heard some of the fans while trying to pacify them. Senior club official Debabrata Sarkar, who tried to rescue the coach and the players, also got pushed and shoved by the infuriated fans. The fans later submitted a charter of demands to Sarkar.

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