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South Africa lodge official complaint after woeful Ghana penalty decision

South Africa, Ghana
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A controversial penalty decision ended South Africa’s 2022 FIFA World Cup hopes.

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The South African Football Association (SAFA) has made an official complaint after a controversial Ghana penalty call ended the national team’s 2022 World Cup hopes.

The Bafana Bafana lost 1-0 to Ghana in Sunday’s top-of-the-table showdown in Group G. Andre Ayew’s decisive penalty sealed their fate, forcing them to watch another World Cup from the sidelines.

However, the referee’s decision to award Ghana a spot-kick in the first place was debatable.

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The Senegalese official, Ndiaye Maguette, pointed to the spot in the 33rd-minute after South Africa defender Rushine De Reuck made contact with Ghana’s Daniel Amartey by flicking his arm out.

SAFA lodge official complaint

The SAFA CEO, Tebogo Motlanthe, has now confirmed an official complaint has been lodged in light of Maguette’s decision.

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“Yes, I can confirm that we acted immediately by registering [a complaint] with the match commissioner last night,” he told Kickoff.

“The penalty issue, from where I was seated, it didn’t look legit. It is sad that referees decide the games at this level. Having seen what the team went through, it is disheartening and we salute the Technical Team and the players for showing the fighting spirit despite the match officials’ conduct.”

What did the coach have to say?

South Africa manager Hugo Broos claims he didn’t see the foul itself but was still unhappy with the referee’s performance.

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“I couldn’t see [the Ghana penalty]. I just saw Daniel Amartey go down,” the Belgian said. “He went down many times during the game, but I didn’t see the incident. But I saw my players were surprised.”

As for the referee, Broos added: “I am very disappointed in the result but I’m proud of my players. But I have to say, the referee today allowed Ghana to be too aggressive. I have nothing against aggressive play but it has to be legal aggression.”