Tolgay Ozbey alleges harassment by East Bengal
Kolkata: Australian forward Tolgay Ozbey on Thursday accused East Bengal of harassment when he wanted to switch over to rival Mohun Bagan, a charge denied by his present club.
The leading East Bengal striker claimed he finished his two-season term with the club after the concluding local league match against Mohammedan Sporting on May 14 when he fired in four goals to hand them a record 33rd title.
"I`m finished with East Bengal at 5:30 pm on May 14. After that I`m free to be in talks with whoever, whenever I want. I don`t know for whatever reasons they are harassing me," he told he reporters at the Calcutta Sports Journalists` Club here.
East Bengal, which has served the Australian a show cause, maintained that Ozbey had signed a voucher for the coming season and was not a free player.
"He is not a free player. He has signed a voucher and has also illegally accepted money from Mohun Bagan. We have written to the IFA to take action against him," East Bengal General Secretary Kalyan Majumdar said.
Ozbey, however, claimed he had not signed any voucher or contract with East Bengal and the club had forcibly tried to put money (about Rs 30 lakh) into his account which he had not accepted.
"They are trying to defame me," he said.
The Aussie said he had given his word to Mohun Bagan and finalised the date of signing of the contract today.
"I`ve finalised with Mohun Bagan for two seasons beginning 2012-13. Today, I`m talking to the Mohun Bagan officials to decide on the date," he said.
Ozbey also alleged that East Bengal had cheated his agent Paul Dickinson by promising USD 12,500. His agent had written to the club 12 times, but had been ignored, he claimed.
"I`ve full faith in IFA to sort this out in a day or two or else, I will be forced to knock on the doors of the AIFF or FIFA," he said.
Ozbey was the third highest goal scorer (18) in the just-concluded I-League season to be instrumental in East Bengal finishing second runners-up for the second season.
He said that he enjoyed playing here and this was the reason why he did not go to Goa.