Fifa pledge to pay R5m to fix Bafana’s bro­ken heart

Foot­ball Gov­ern­ing body to com­pen­sate Safa for cost of Sene­gal match

The Times (South Africa) - - Sport - By MN­I­NAWA NT­LOKO

● Fifa has agreed to pay a min­i­mum of R5-mil­lion to the SA Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion to cover the costs of the tainted 2018 World Cup qual­i­fier that the world foot­ball gov­ern­ing body asked Bafana Bafana to re­play in Novem­ber.

Bafana beat Sene­gal 2-1 in Polok­wane in Novem­ber last year‚ but the re­sult was scrapped af­ter ref­eree Joseph Lamptey was found to have ma­nip­u­lated the re­sult.

Con­tro­ver­sial Ghana­ian of­fi­cial Lamptey re­ceived a life­time ban from Fifa, which or­dered South Africa to re­play the match.

Safa CEO Den­nis Mum­ble re­vealed that Fifa promised to pick up the bill for the match and the costs could es­ca­late be­yond R5-mil­lion.

“They (Fifa) have con­firmed to us that they will pick up the tab of that match‚” Mum­ble said.

“They re­alise that we were not at fault and these are wasted costs for us.

“For any in­ter­na­tional match‚ it de­pends on the venue and the lo­ca­tion‚ but it’s a min­i­mum of R5-mil­lion that we spend to put a sin­gle Bafana Bafana match to­gether.

“It in­volves the sta­dium hire‚ it in­volves trans­porta­tion. The fur­ther out the match goes from Jo­han­nes­burg we must fly out even the vis­it­ing team to that des­ti­na­tion.”

Mum­ble ex­plained that vis­it­ing teams were re­spon­si­ble for fly­ing them­selves to Jo­han­nes­burg, but if the match was in an­other prov­ince then Safa picked up the dif­fer­ence.

“This match took place in Polok­wane and we had to pay the dif­fer­ence‚” he said.

“As far as the ac­com­mo­da­tion ar­range­ments are con­cerned‚ our team is in camp for a week-and-a-half be­fore the match it­self.

“So, all of those ac­com­mo­da­tion costs and other lo­gis­tics we have to pay. We also have to pay the staff and the match bonuses to the play­ers. We can­not say to the play­ers they must pay back those bonuses. No, they played DEN­NIS MUM­BLE Safa CEO and they must be com­pen­sated for that.”

The match will be re­played in Novem­ber on a date that Safa was plan­ning to host the an­nual Nel­son Man­dela Chal­lenge friendly be­tween South Africa and an op­po­nent who is yet to be con­firmed.

Safa of­fi­cials use the match to help raise funds for the Nel­son Man­dela Chil­dren’s Fund and Mum­ble said they would ask Fifa to con­sider con­tribut­ing to the cause‚ given that they’ve had to pull the plug on the char­ity match to ac­com­mo­date the re­play.

“So, we want Fifa to make that do­na­tion to the Nel­son Man­dela Chil­dren’s Fund, be­cause we would have raised that money for the fund on that date, which is now taken up by the Fifa fix­ture.

“We will ask Fifa to please take into con­sid­er­a­tion the fact that we make a sub­stan­tial con­tri­bu­tion to the Nel­son Man­dela Chil­dren’s Fund ev­ery year and they have a hos­pi­tal stand­ing up that needs op­er­at­ing costs to be raised.

“We are go­ing to ask Fifa to please make that do­na­tion to the Nel­son Man­dela Chil­dren’s Fund,” he said.

“They re­alise that we were not at fault and these are wasted costs for us”

Pic­ture: Syd­ney Seshibedi/Gallo Im­ages

FAIR’S FAIR: Safa CEO Den­nis Mum­ble speaks to jour­nal­ists at a press con­fer­ence an­nounc­ing the as­so­ci­a­tion’s re­sponse to Fifa can­celling the re­sult of Bafana’s 2-1 win over Sene­gal in Polok­wane last year

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