The South African Football Association (Safa) has condemned the mistreatment of Al Ahly Pitso Mosimane’s coach ahead of Saturday’s African Champions League game against his former club Mamelodi Sundowns.
People wearing the colors of host club Mamelodi Sundowns temporarily blocked a bus carrying the Egyptian team to a stadium in Pretoria and held signs, many of which contained abuse targeting Mosimane.
Mosimane guided Sundowns with huge success from 2012 until last September, when he became the first Sub-Saharan African to coach Ahly and immediately won the Champions League with them.
“These individuals have not only humiliated coach Pitso Mosimane”, they have discredited the name of the country, “said Safa general manager Tebogo Motlanthe.
“Safa will spare no effort to identify these people and will impose the most severe penalties on them.
“Mosimane is our proud ambassador and what these people have done must be condemned by all civilized people.”
The South African Football Coaches Association (SAFCA) also condemned the abuse and shameful treatment of Mosimane.
“The attack was not only an attack on Mosimane and his club, but it was also an attack on the coaching profession as a whole,” said SAFCA president Greg Mashilo.
“We cannot have a situation where the safety of our esteemed technicians and players is compromised. But in addition, the attack was also a damage to the image of football in the country.
“It is for this reason that we are appealing that all those who can be identified be brought to book and be banned from the game as a matter of urgency.
“Failure to do so would risk tolerating hooliganism in what is called the beautiful thing.”
The SAFCA also called on Mamelodi Sundowns to speed up the investigation into the case to send a strong message in our collective quest to root our football from such bad elements.
Born in South Africa, Mosimane thinks he knows the identity of the person behind the signs insulting him and his mother, but has not disclosed it.
No spectators have been allowed to attend the second leg of the quarter-finals of the first African club competition due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Defending champions Ahly held Sundowns to a 1-1 draw and advanced 3-1 overall to the semi-finals, where they will face the Tunisian club Esperance.