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Odisha FC sack head coach Stuart Baxter over post-match remarks

head coach Stuart Baxter
Stuart Baxter as the South African national team head coach

Odisha FC has parted ways with head coach Stuart Baxter owing to his ‘unacceptable’ post-match remarks after the 1-0 loss to Jamshedpur FC.

Mobashir Rahman gave Jamshedpur the lead going into the half-time break as the midfielder’s tricky cross and a timely run from Nerijus Valskis tricked Arshdeep Singh in goal and the ball ended up in the back of the net.

In the second half, Diego Mauricio was hacked down in the penalty area by Jamshedpur goalkeeper TP Rehenesh but the referee didn’t award a penalty. Furious at the incident, Baxter burst after the match whilst giving the post-match interview saying that either one of his players has to get ‘raped’ or ‘rape’ someone else to get a penalty from the officials.

Appalled at the remarks, the club very quickly released a statement that they are disappointed about the post-match remarks from the English coach. The statement said, 

“The Club is appalled at the comments made by Head Coach, Stuart Baxter during the post-match interview today. It is completely unacceptable whatever the context and does not reflect the values of the club. We, at Odisha FC, unreservedly apologize and the club management will handle this matter internally.”

The Juggernauts currently sit bottom of the table and club owner Rohan Sharma was ‘disgusted’ at the comments made by the man he appointed before the start of the season. He said, 

“I am absolutely disgusted and infuriated by the comments. I’ve said Odisha FC is a safe space for all, and to make light of a serious awful crime in such an offhanded way is reprehensible. I sincerely apologize to everyone on my behalf and the club’s behalf. Please be rest assured that I am not going to take this matter lightly.”

After some overnight deliberation within the club management, the decision to fire the English head coach was taken and announced Tuesday morning. The announcement on the interim head coach will be made soon by the club.