Odisha FC sack head coach Stuart Baxter following tasteless post-match comments
ODISHA FC HAVE SACKED their head coach Stuart Baxter in a display of prompt action following certain controversial remarks made by the coach.
After Odisha's loss to Jamshedpur FC last night, Baxter was talking about certain refereeing decisions not going his teams's way. He used an unseemly metaphor to make his point,
"One of our players will have to rape someone or get raped himself if he was to get a penalty."
The comments caused immediate backlash online and the franchise acknowledged the issue, with both the club's official Twitter handle and owner Rohan Sharma addressing the matter and expressing their shock.
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.— Rohan (@MrRohanSharma) February 1, 2021
I sincerely apologize to everyone on my behalf and the clubs https://t.co/nhq0kJPrGM
After assuring people that they would deal with this matter privately, earlier this afternoon the club officially announced the termination of Baxter's contract.
Odisha FC has decided to terminate Head Coach, Stuart Baxter's contract with immediate effect.— Odisha FC (@OdishaFC) February 2, 2021
The interim coach for the remainder of the season will be announced soon.#OdishaFC pic.twitter.com/FcrMPCDn5h
Baxter took over the reigns at Odisha FC in the 2020-21 season following a 2 year stint with the South Africa national team. Under him, Odisha FC have seen a considerable drop in performance compared to the previous season. After 14 matches, the club is dead last in the points table with just 8 points, collected from 1 win and 5 draws.
The poor performance alone might have enough to trigger a sacking, but the tasteless comments last night appears to have caused the club management to take an immediate step to remove him.
Odisha FC next take to the pitch on Saturday 6th February against Mohun Bagan; and the interim coach is expected to take charge before that.