ISL 2018-19: Kerala Blasters midfielder Zakeer Mundampara banned for 6 months by AIFF
Kerala Blasters will have to continue their days of gloom as the latest bothering headline is the 6-month suspension of their midfielder Zakeer Mundampara. Blasters, who are already beset at the departure of English manager David James and star players like CK Vineeth will find the new information hard to take in.
Kerala Blasters were very desperate of a win, when they set off to face Mumbai City on 16th of December, before the winter break. However, the misery never left the Yellows as they conceded thrice in the first 30 minutes of the game. This eventually led to the Blasters players losing control over the game and temper. The 35th minute saw Zakeer Mundampara get booked by the referee. A few minutes later, in the additional time of the first half, the 28-year old midfielder was spotted once again, facing the Mumbai players roughly. The second yellow and eventually the red card was taken out, which infuriated the central midfielder, who threw the ball on the referee - Umesh Bora's face.
Bora had also complained that the former Chennaiyin FC player used foul language on him. A case that was on-spot regarded as violent and improper conduct had attracted a lot of criticism to the player. The player hailing from Kerala, was said to have crossed the limits of manner and respect that should be showcased on the field.
However, the suspension that has been handed by the All India Football Federation (AIFF) will be a huge drawback for both the player and his club. Zakeer has left a bad mark in his career with this incident. The suspension has come at an adverse situation for the club under the new manager.
This would also mean that Zakeer Mundampara wouldn't be able to play under the newly appointed coach Nelo Vingada. A six month ban would mean that the player would miss the remaining of the current season. At a stage when players like CK Vineeth and Halicharan Narzary has almost left the club and Sandesh Jhingan is on the verge of an exit, missing the crucial bench support would be a concern.
A couple of weeks into the break, reports were aired that Zakeer Mundampara appeared in a Sevens football match at Malappuram in Kerala. Though not a factor in the suspension, players' participation in unofficial and local sevens tournaments has been a case seriously addressed by the ISL clubs. The same game was promoted with the presence of Sahal Abdul Samad, who backed out in the final hours, possibly due to pressure from the Blasters management. In the previous seasons too, Kerala players like Anas Edathodika and Ashique Kuruniyan had not been taken well to participate in the tournaments by their respective clubs.
Zakeer Mundapamra will be having some darker days of his football days for the next six months, having banned from playing, by the Federation - a case that will not go well with the club and the player.