Nodley Wright, Gleaner Writer
Marcelino Blackburn's future at Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) club Arnett Gardens could be in jeopardy following his attack on a teammate at the end of their 1-2 loss to Waterhouse at the Drewsland Stadium on Monday night.
Blackburn, in his second stint at his hometown club after playing at Harbour View and Tivoli Gardens, was said to have inflicted a wound to veteran central defender Desmond Breakenridge in the changing room after the game.
The former Charlie Smith schoolboy standout and one-time member of the country's national Under-17 team was noticeably upset after being replaced by coach Calvin Lewis in the 68th minute and, according to sources, made it clear that he was waiting for the coach to arrive to disrespect him.
angry and insulting
The sources further revealed that Blackburn was told by Breakenridge that that was not the place or time to discuss the issue. That reportedly got an angry and insulting response from Blackburn. Breakenridge challenged him verbally about his statements and was assaulted by Blackburn, according to the sources. Only the intervention of teammates prevented the incident from escalating and minutes later a number of players from the Arnett Gardens' team were seen leaving the ground voicing their displeasure at what happened, without giving anything away.
The talented but temperamental player must have envisioned a better end to his evening, as he scored a fine header in the 37th minute to pull his team level after Jason Watson had handed the home team the lead just under a minute earlier. Fired up and effective throughout his stay on the field until he was replaced in the 68th minute by the much more physical Newton Sterling, Blackburn was one of his team's most dangerous players on the night.
When coach Calvin Lewis was asked about the changing-room incident, he said he had nothing to say on the matter.
"I have nothing really to say on the matter other than that I will write a report and submit it to the club's management. When and if they release a statement or comment then I will," Lewis told The Gleaner.
powerful free kick
Just nine minutes before he was substituted, Blackburn went close to adding a second when he peppered the palm of goalkeeper Richard McCallum with a powerfully struck free kick from the right side of the box. Had his effort gone to McCallum's far post instead of his near one the story could have been entirely different, as it would have put them in the lead, his team could have won the game and he would have ended the evening a happy man.
Blackburn's situation could have been prompted by the fact that he had just been involved in an incident with goalkeeper Richard McCallum, who went down clutching his head after being challenged by the attacker. Contact appeared minimal, and television replays seemed to indicate that no contact was made at all.
While McCallum was not booked for simulation, Blackburn seemed angry about the goalkeeper's behaviour and gesticulated at him and exchanged words with him.