Tolgay Ozbey met the press with Bagan officials on 4th September at the club tent after he registered for Bagan. Tolgay’s responses were crisp and polite and he did not hide his emotions in the press meet. Bagan officials too criticised IFA’s role in this matter.
“I had a very satisfying meeting with East Bengal officials on Monday and I’m happy that I could sign for Mohun Bagan. What happened is a great lesson for me. Everything is forgiven but nothing is forgotten”Tolgay mentioned when he was asked about the incident.
He added “I was forced to live in a situation where I felt I was being blackmailed. Moving the FIFA was one of the options but I had to accept what was given to me because I wanted to start playing as soon as possible,”
He also mentioned that if he might have hurt the sentiments of some by joining Mohun Bagan and mentioned "all I can say is that don’t cry and and I am a Mohun Bagan player now”
He added " In fact I am glad that my money, and not East Bengal’s, will go to the development of nursery football"
Meanwhile Bagan officials criticised IFA’s policy of not educating the players for the ‘token system’ and felt they must educate the players for the same. Tolgay added his vision on this issue and said “Even the FIFA rules don’t have any mention about tokens. I would request both the IFA and the clubs to notify foreign players about this token system. I would never want other foreign players to suffer like I did"
He mentioned "What has happened, has happened. I don’t want to look back. For me, all matches in the Bagan jersey are of immense importance. I just can’t wait to play my first match for the club" , indicating he is aware of the expectations the club’s supporters and members have from him. The team failed to win a trophy in 2 seasons, even if they were deprived by the referees in 2010-11, but that should not be treated as an excuse and he must deliver now.
Picture courtesy : The Times of India