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Safa calls for patience as appeal against 'suspect' ref takes longer

Motlanthe says Fifa is evaluating new evidence

Neville Khoza Journalist
Ghana Captain Andrew Ayew and South African captain Rowen Williams with the Match Officials during the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifier between Ghana and South Africa held at the Cape Coast Sports Stadium in Cape Coast, Ghana on 14 November 2021.
Ghana Captain Andrew Ayew and South African captain Rowen Williams with the Match Officials during the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifier between Ghana and South Africa held at the Cape Coast Sports Stadium in Cape Coast, Ghana on 14 November 2021.
Image: Thabang Lepule/BackpagePix

The SA Football Association (Safa) may go to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) should they not get a satisfactory outcome in SA's appeal regarding the World Cup qualifier against Ghana last month.

Bafana Bafana are still awaiting word from the world football governing body after complaining that Senegalese referee N’Diaye Maguette had allegedly manipulated the match, which SA lost 0-1 to bow out of contention for a playoff spot.

It has been several days since the Fifa disciplinary committee met to decide Bafana’s qualifying fate and as South Africans are anxiously waiting for the response, Safa CEO Tebogo Motlanthe has asked for patience.

While Fifa had initially stated a verdict would be made after the case was heard on November 23, Motlanthe said that was not the case as the world body needs time to arrive at a conclusion.

“I think as South Africans the mistake we have made is that everyone thought the decision will be announced on November 23,” Motlanthe explained to Sowetan yesterday.

“Remember, they said they are going to listen to the matter on the 23rd. Fifa didn’t say they were going to give a decision on that day, so let’s just give them their time to do their work.

“There are a lot of things they are dealing with. If they don’t give you a good reason, you can still go and challenge the matter with CAS. So they rather do their work and we give them the space.”

Motlanthe also revealed that more people in Ghana have come forward and added more information which will be helpful to Fifa in their investigation.

This follows a Sunday World report that an unknown official from Ghana had travelled to Senegal before the match and allegedly would have met the referee for bribery. It is also believed this is prolonging the Fifa review as they continue with their investigations.

“There has been a lot of information that is coming from Ghana itself about a lot of things, so they are giving us information,” he said.

“Fifa said if there is information you get, you must disclose it. If not, then you are part of it. So we will wait and see and not put pressure on them. Let them do their investigations. We ask everyone to remain patient.”

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