“If he tells me the truth and explains it properly to me‚ then I am OK‚" says Menzo

Ajax Cape Town coach Stanley Menzo.
Ajax Cape Town coach Stanley Menzo.
Image: GALLO IMAGES

Coach Stanley Menzo has questioned the incident around Sedwyn George’s disallowed goal for struggling Ajax Cape Town against SuperSport United in their 1-0 Absa Premiership loss to Mbombela on Wednesday.

Ajax were incensed that the goal was not allowed to stand‚ though to the letter of the law referee Eketsang Setloboko was correct‚ even if his handling of the incident was poor.

Setloboko‚ who has curiously officiated Ajax in three of his last five Premiership matches‚ called for a drop ball in the second half having stopped the game to allow for an injury.

He then re-started by simply dropping the ball in the direction of SuperSport goalkeeper Reyaad Pieterse‚ but neither the gloeveman nor any of his Matsatsantsa teammates moved towards it.

George simply strolled up and passed the loose ball into the back of the net for what he thought was the equaliser.

The rules state that at a drop ball‚ two players must have touched the ball before it becomes active‚ so from that point of view‚ Setloboko was correct.

But what he should also have done according to the rules was call a player from each side over to contest the drop ball‚ rather than simply throw it back into play.

“I can’t change it‚ but I wanted to know what actually happened‚” Menzo told reporters.

“If he tells me the truth and explains it properly to me‚ then I am OK.

"I didn’t know what the rule was and I thought it was wrong. When I see something wrong I have to tell you.

“It was strange for me that he just gave the ball back to SuperSport and that’s not the rule as I know it.”

Menzo was buoyed by the fact that his side lifted their performances in the second period after a lacklustre opening‚ and could easily have got something from the game.

“Clearly I was not happy with our first half‚ but I think the players were also not happy and you could see that in the second half.

“Second half I think was good‚ we did what we had to do‚ we had more chances on goal‚ and yes‚ a little bit unlucky. When you are in this position‚ things don’t fall your way‚ they fall the other way.”

Menzo hauled off youngster Masilake Phohlongo five minutes before the break after an ineffective performance‚ saying he felt he had to make the change rather than wait for halftime.

“I don’t blame him for anything‚ he is a youngster of only 18 years and it can happen. It is nothing serious. But if you see that something is going wrong then you have to make a change as a coach‚” Menzo said.

“In Sedwyn George we have someone who can score goals‚ and with Tassie [Tashreeq Morris] behind Sedwyn‚ it made a difference.

"Sometimes you have to make choices‚ sometimes they are good and sometimes they are not.”

Ajax are above the relegation zone on goal-difference only‚ but Menzo still believes he can lift the side out of the doldrums.

He adds that the day he stops believing that‚ he will walk away.

“It won’t change on its own. I am the one who has to change it with this team.

"The moment I see what we cannot do anything any more‚ then it is over.”

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