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Dynamos fail to lodge complaint timeously, get CAF lifeline

[Posted 14 Apr 2011]
[By Brighton Mupangavanhu]
Dynamos fail to lodge complaint timeously, get CAF lifeline

It really boggles the mind how after such a match which hogged international limelight for alleged biased officiating, that Dynamos failed to lodge a proper complaint with CAF within stipulated time and left everything to the Zimbabwe Football Association.

How on earth can an Executive of such a big club like Dynamos neglect to do the obvious after the "daylight robbery" which took place in Algeria last week where MC Alger was aided by the "12th man" to qualify for the next stage of the CAF Champions League.

This 12th man was not to be found in the stands of the Algerian club, but on the middle of the park, a man who was expected not to play a part in the outcome of the match but to ensure a level playing field... he is a certain referee from Egypt called Fahim Omar.

Even CAF has not failed to see the potential for gaining publicity from the controversial match, and have decided that, despite the Zimbabwean club's disappointing and embarrassing failure to lodge the complaint on time, they would include the MC Alger/Dynamos match on the list of controversial matches to be reviewed by CAF's Disciplinary Board at a meeting to be held in Johannesburg, South Africa on 19 April.

What more evidence does one need to see the extent of decay at the mighty club from Zimbabwe who have for many years been the flag-bearers of the COSAFA region in Africa's premier club competitions?

The match which has now attracted the unsolicited attention of CAF saw many controversial decisions being taken by Omar in the 2nd leg of the ill-fated MC/Dynamos CL first round match played in Algiers.

Statistics from this match are alarming.

Dynamos players were shown 8 yellow cards and 2 redcards, and the team ended the match with only 9 players on the field, after star midfielder Archieford Gutu and key defender Guthrie Zhokinyu were given their marching orders by Omar.

MC Alger were handsomely awarded 36 free-kicks by the Egyptian referee compared to Dynamos' single decision which went in their favour for the entire evening.

All this was despite the fact that star attacking midfielder Denver Mukamba, a joint target of the Algerians together with Gutu, was punched in the face on several occasions, yet Omar decided to turn a blind eye on such blatant fouls and unsportman tactics from the hosts.

There are complaints from the Dynamos camp that the first goal scored by MC Alger was from a clear off-side position, and Omar allowed it to stand despite protests from Dynamos, not that referees are obliged to change their decisions because of players' protests anyway. 

Independent reports from Algeria also indicate that the penalty awarded to the North African club which gave them their second goal was dubious, and even took the MC Alger players by surprise.

What was even more absurd according to the newspaper reports from Algeria and elsewhere was Omar's decision to send-off Dynamos' Gutu for adjudging that he had impeded on an opponent, when television reviews show that the MC Alger player infact bumped onto Gutu and tumbled on the ground.

Dynamos and newspaper reports are agreeable however on the fact that the 3rd MC Alger goal was a genuine goal and that Omar was right to allow it to stand.

However, Dynamos claim that the referee added seven minutes of injury time instead of one minute as was indicated by the fourth official.

What is puzzling however is why Dynamos never even thought of playing the second half under protest, or even at any stage threaten to walk out of the match to register their displeasure at the manner in which the referee handled the encounter in Algiers.

Even more absurd, is Dynamos' failure to lodge a complaint with the correct channels within stipulated time, yet a day never passed without Dynamos mourning about 'daylight robbery in Algiers' in the local media.

Now that Dynamos has been thrown a life-line by CAF, they should probably seek to forward to the disciplinary board a  detailed report of what they wish CAF to consider in their inquiry on the 19th April in Johannesburg.

And if Dynamos will be allowed to make any presentation to the Board, then they should not let this chance slip through their fingers, like what they almost did by their failure to lodge a complaint with CAF timeously.

CAF will review many other disputed matches in competition matches played last week during their meeting in Johannesburg next Tuesday.

Responsible clubs such as Club Africain of Tunisia have filed a complaint with CAF against Zamalek of Egypt for violence which caused the abandonment of the Champions League 2nd leg tie in Cairo. Zamalek were leading 2-1 at the time, following a 2-4 loss in Tunisia a fortnight before.

Other complaints to be dealt with include the one filed by Democratic Republic of Congo's AS Vita Club Against Cotonsport of Cameroon for the 1st leg match which Cotonsport won 1-0. The Cameroonians went on to win the 2nd leg 2-0.

Two Nigerian clubs Kano Pillars and Enyimba have also complained to CAF against their opponents WAC Casablanca from Morocco and US Bitam of Gabon respectively.

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