Ghana through its football federation has hit out at the South African Football Association over the complaints made by the football body to FIFA.
SAFA president, Danny Jordaan detailed a comprehensive formal complaint made to FIFA following South Africa’s controversial 1-0 defeat in Ghana.
Following the 1-nil loss to Ghana, the South African Football Association wrote to FIFA, explaining the controversial decisions made by the Senegalese referee Maguette N’Diaye in the tie.
The highlight of the controversial decision was the awarding of the ultimately match-winning penalty for an alleged foul by Rushine De Reuck on Daniel Amartey which was converted by Andre Ayew.
On Thursday, Ghana, in a lengthy response, hit out at the claims made by SAFA, calling them “shocking” and “irresponsible” – among many other things!
The statement in full:
The truth is that the distance from Accra to Cape Coast is only 79 miles (127 km). Unfortunately for our colleagues, Cape Coast is a tourist’s city and many people across the world have been to Cape Coast and would be shocked to hear such a blatant lie from no less a Football Association than the SAFA. Our colleagues forgot that we defeated them 2-0 in Cape Coast in November 2019 in a Cup of Nations qualifier.
The total driving time is just over two (2) hours and not 7 or 9 hours. Kindly note that the South African Team was led to Cape Coast by Police escort and motorcade. In fact, the South African team got to Cape Coast before the Black Stars got to Cape Coast. We urge every South African and all well-meaning football followers to google the distance from Accra to Cape Coast.
Thus, the SAFA started creating a foundation for a mountain of lies even before the game day itself.
Out of respect and sportsmanship, the Ghana Football Association kept its focus on the match itself unlike our colleagues at SAFA. Then again, these allegations cast a doubt on the good job done by the officials of the South African Embassy in Ghana. In fact, FIFA and its regulations does not allow any team to travel on road for six (6) hours or nine (9) hours within a country. One may ask, why didn’t the SAFA report this to FIFA or CAF. (The FIFA standard is 200 km warrant a flight).
Even though we believe that it is within the South African Football Association’s right to call for investigation, if they feel that certain factors contributed to their loss, we wish to state that the way and manner lies, and allegations have been thrown into the public space has been very irresponsible leading to injury and violence.
We wish to state categorically that the allegations are frivolous, baseless and lacks merits and should be treated with all the contempt that it deserves. These allegations from South Africa Football Association are nothing but a planned scheme and a calculated attempt to shift focus from the defeat, divert attention from their failure to qualify for the play-offs and unjustly dent the hard-earned victory of the Black Stars.
Is it not sad that even innocent Ball Boys (Ball Retrievers) were not spared in the allegations?
In fact, the Ghana Football Association will not allow the SAFA to visit its incompetence on it through these allegations. Is it not strange that the Coach of the South African National Team thought that FIFA will use Head-to-Head when two teams end the group stage with the same number of points and had to be corrected by the media? The South African team actually thought Ghana needed a 2-0 margin to qualify when Ghana needed any win to qualify per the FIFA Regulations on the qualifiers.
Again, is it not strange that when the Technical Team of the Black Stars was analysing each player of the South African team (including their goalkeepers and goals they have conceded and how they respond during penalty kicks) SAFA says competitor analysis is alien to the game of football. Maybe they should check from the top teams of the world. This is what The Blac