Cape Town City use video evidence arguing to shorten Mpho Makola’s sentence
Veteran midfielder Mpho Makola and Cape Town City will present footage as evidence in mitigating circumstances at an appeal hearing on Friday in a bid to have the player’s six-month ban reduced to four matches.
The 33-year-old Makola appealed against the Premier Soccer League’s disciplinary committee’s six-month ban imposed on him last month for “assaulting a match official.”
The appeal hearing will start at 5pm at the offices of the SA Football Association’s (SAfa) headquarters in Nasrec‚ Johannesburg.
The hearing will be overseen by the chairman of Safa’s appeals board Advocate Sthembiso Mdladla.
In their mitigating arguments‚ TimesLIVE has been reliably informed that City will present a video footage of an incident almost identical to Makola’s case to prove that a six-month ban was unjust.
The video clip in question is that of Mamelodi Sundowns’ captain Hlompho Kekana pushing a referee in frustration during a Caf Champions League match in August.
In the video clip‚ which TimesLIVE has seen‚ Kekana shoved the referee and was duly sent off.
Kekana’s two-match suspension was doubled to a four-match ban as per Article 129(a) of Caf’s disciplinary code. Kekana quietly served the four-match ban.
Makola‚ in the heat of the moment in City’s penalties Telkom Knockout final defeat to Kaizer Chiefs at Cape Town Stadium on October 19‚ shoved referee Abongile Tom in a manner that clearly warranted a sending-off. Instead he only received a booking.
It appears that the PSL prosecutor used Article 126.96.36.199 of the National Soccer League (NSL) Handbook‚ which carries “at least six (6) months for assaulting a Match Official”.
City will argue that Makola’s charge of “assault” was harsh‚ and that misconduct would be more proper in the circumstances.
They will motivate that Kekana’s actions are no different to that of Makola and therefore a similar four-match ban should also be applied to their influential player.
City chairman Comitis did not want to be drawn into the merits of their case but said that Makola’s hefty ban is unjust and should be set aside.
“We hope that humanity and sanity will prevail on Friday so that Mpho can be sanctioned accordingly‚” Comitis told TimesLIVE on Thursday.
“Whilst we don’t condone his misconduct against the referee‚ the club and football fraternity must fight for our player over a correct sentence. The sentence for misconduct against a referee is a four-match ban‚ perhaps the correct determination.
“We do not condone the player’s action in any way. However‚ in saying that‚ we still maintain that his punishment was harsh.”