The 28-year old Okpara was in a foul mood after the match and was alleged to have very nearly come to blows with his fellow countryman.The Salt Lake Stadium was the venue for yet another act of violence, only this time it came from two of the players rather than the crowd. Prayag United ended East Bengal's unbeaten run in the league thanks to a Ranti Martins header. The defeat left a sour taste in the mouth of the East Bengal players who have now suffered two defeats in a week, the first being against 1-2 defeat to Aryan Club in the Calcutta Football League.
However, the match had a finale to it as East Bengal's Uga Okpara and Prayag United's Bello Rasaq were reportedly involved in a heated scuffle after the game. The 28-year old Okpara was seen exchanging heated words with his Nigerian counterpart Rasaq during the game and when the United SC centre-half went to shake hands with the East Bengal man. Okpara allegedly reacted strongly and nearly came to blows with him.
|Okpara (far left) was involved in an altercation with Prayag's Bello Rasaq|
The others players on the field managed to separate the duo. A scarred Bello, who had a minor cut on his upper lip during the after-match scuffle, ran for his life even as Ranti Martins and Alivito D’Cunha were trying to pacify an incensed Okpara.
Following last Sunday’s fracus during the I-League match between East Bengal and Mohun Bagan the police forces did not take any chances. They were quick to react and cordoned off the field.
"I've never seen Uga losing his temper in such a way. He is usually a level-headed person. I don't know what transpired between the duo, but Uga must have been provoked, an East Bengal player said to The Times of India.
"Things calmed down after players of both the teams intervened. So I do not know why Uga reacted like that after the match," Bello’s partner in the defence Gouramangi Singh told The Telegraph.Rasaq however shrugged off the scuffle by saying, "Nothing's happened, everything is okay."
A Prayag United player too was surprised by the events and revealed that he had taken some blows to his body when he attempted to separate the warring parties. East Bengal coach Trevor Morgan however said that he had not seen the incident as he had left the field immediately after the final whistle. However the Englishman stated that Okpara would be punished if he was found guilty of breaching team discipline.
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