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EFF backs Mosimane after shocking stadium scenes, to ask Caf and Safa to fine Sundowns for fans' actions

WARNING | Video contains strong and offensive language

23 May 2021 - 12:29 By tiisetso malepa
Pitso Mosimane and his Al Ahly coching staff arrive at Lucas Moripe Stadium in Atteridgevile on May 22 2021.
Pitso Mosimane and his Al Ahly coching staff arrive at Lucas Moripe Stadium in Atteridgevile on May 22 2021.
Image: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

The EFF have come out in support of Pitso Mosimane after the former Mamelodi Sundowns coach was verbally abused by the club’s supporters in Atteridgeville on Saturday afternoon.

The Al Ahly coach returned home to SA with his Egyptian side for the return leg of a Caf Champions League quarterfinal clash carrying a 2-0 advantage from the first outing‚ but his home coming was marred by a section of the Sundowns supporters who accosted the visiting team bus and yelled profanities at their former coach.

The insults were also directed at his mother.

The match went ahead at the Lucas Moripe Stadium and Mosimane had the last laugh as defending champions Ahly held Sundowns to a 1-1 draw to advance to the semifinals 3-1 on aggregate.

“The EFF condemns in the strongest terms‚ the unruly behaviour and violent scenes by Mamelodi Sundowns fans towards Al Ahly coach Pitso Mosimane on Saturday 22 May 2021 after the Caf Champions League match at the Lucas Moripe Stadium‚” the political party said in a statement on Sunday.

“Coach Pitso is an exceptional African coach who has taken a new challenge and is already flying the SA flag high.

“He has done good for SA soccer and is among the best football coaches in African continent and the world.

“As such‚ for coach Pitso‚ management‚ and his players to require such an escort is distasteful.

“The Sundowns has shown the highest form of self-hate horrendous to watch; worse Pitso Mosimane’s mother was dragged into verbal assault that was obviously premeditated to bring Mosimane [sic]‚” reads the EFF statement.

“I was a little bit emotional when I saw placards outside the stadium of all of those people swearing at me and swearing at my mother‚” a visibly upset Mosimane said in his post-match interview.

“I asked myself what else should I have done for this team to gain their respect‚” asked the coach who led Sundowns to the 2016 Caf Champions League and Super Cup titles.

Mosimane led Sundowns to several titles on the domestic and continental fronts during his eight trophy-laden years at Chloorkop before leaving to join the Egyptian giants in September last year.

The EFF said Mosimane does not owe Sundowns anything.

“He built Sundowns and won all possible trophies‚ and if anything‚ Sundowns should be celebrating him.

“In a sports code that never gives black coaches room to thrive‚ Pitso Mosimane has managed to achieve the unthinkable from the dusty streets of SA to the best coach in Africa‚” said the EFF.

“It is worse for a team like Sundowns to drag Mosimane when their very own former president, Patrice Motsepe, is meant to bring unity and cohesion in the sport as president of the Confederation of African Football.”

The EFF said it will write to the SA Football Association (Safa) and the Confederation of African Football (Caf) to call on both bodies to fine Sundowns and its supporters.

“We cannot afford to wait for individuals to be physically harmed or killed before decisive action is taken.

"The EFF will write to Caf and Safa demanding appropriate action be taken against Sundowns.

“The EFF is proud of coach Pitso and continues to rally with excitement his successful career at the top level.

“Coach Pitso must not be discouraged by this‚ may he remain strong and know that as the EFF we are very proud of him.”

Mosimane said after the match that he knows the person who instigated the violent riot‚ but did not provide a name.

“I know who was behind that protest. The person is bitter because I left and I have had to move on with my life.”

Sundowns are yet to release a statement condemning Saturday’s distasteful incidents.