41 own goals results in Life restriction for South African club

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After 4 clubs were prohibited for life from the 4th tier of South African football after fixing games in a bid to win the league, authorities have lined up a series of workshops to educate coaches, officials and referees.

For as table-topping rivals Matiyasi FC and Shivulani Dangerous Tigers battled for the title last month, so some remarkable scorelines emerged.

The Tigers beat Kotoko Happy Boys 33-1 in late May, just for Matiyasi to improve on this with an eye-popping 59-1 triumph over third-placed Nsami Mighty Birds.

Officials from the clubs have gotten suspensions of in between 5 and 8 seasons for their roles in fixing the games on 22 May, while the particular match officials have actually been offered ten-season bans.

" These people do not have regard for football, and we can not allow it to take place again," Vincent Ramphago, president of the Mopani region, told BBC Sport Africa.

" What is sad is there are young players included because the competition guidelines state that each group needs to field a minimum of 5 players under 21.

" Our main aim in organising leagues is to make sure we groom the young footballers into potential future Bafana players."

Regardless of their efforts, the goals eventually counted for little however, as Gawula Classic - who finished 4th in the league - were stated winners of South Africa's Mopani region.

These followed the restrictions distributed to the three teams above them, with Shivulani having actually led by 3 points, not to mention being 16 goals ahead on goal difference, prior to kick-off of the final day.

" Our examination found that Matiyasi and Nsami wished to stop Shivulani from topping the log so they agreed on fixing the match to prevent this from happening," specified Ramphago.

" After hearing that Matiyasi were leading 22-0 at half-time, Shivulani colluded to get rid of Kotoko Happy Boys players from the field. The players who came off said they were tired leaving their team with just 7 players.

" In the Matiyasi game on the other hand, the referee provided players red cards so that Nsami wound up with 7 players."

When the groups had actually previously met in March, the scorelines were substantially more sober, with Matiyasi pounding Nsami Mighty Birds 2-1 while Shivulani Dangerous Tigers drew 2-2 with Kotoko Happy Boys.

The disciplinary committee has currently found proof of collusion in between the particular groups and the match officials to contrive the outcomes.

Players from the 4 teams in South Africa's northern Limpopo province will discover their fate in the next few days.

Heavy sanctions are expected after Kotoko Happys Boys' players just left the field in their 33-1 thrashing, while it emerged that Nsami Mighty Birds had scored 41 own goals during their 59-1 mauling - regardless of ending up the game with just seven players.

" When we investigated we found that a few of the Matiyasi goals were not even [effectively registered] because the referee was not able to analyze his report," said Ramphago.

" We discovered the referee was just composing - 'player number 2 scored 10 goals, player number 5 scored 20 goals' and so on - but there were 41 own goals so how were they recording these?" added Ramphago, who is also the chairman of the region's competitions committee.

Angry Birds

Nsami Mighty Birds coach Neil Thwala informed a national radio station his players were angry going into the Matiyasi game.

" In the previous match we played, we were told the referee belongs to Shivulane Dangerous Tigers," the Nsami coach stated.

" We scored four goals but all of them were prohibited by the referee but then they hit a side net and the referee stated it's a goal. When we reported the matter to Safa, we were told that the referee's decision is last.

" The players' minds were not on the  game because even if they won, they understood it wasn't going to help them in any way. I tried as a coach to push them however it was tough - there was absolutely nothing I might do."

Unlikely scorelines are absolutely nothing brand-new in African football, with two Nigerian promotion rivals handed 10-year restrictions in 2013 after recording wins of 79-0 and 67-0.

Yet absolutely nothing beats the 149-0 win recorded by Madagascar's AS Adema after their competitors SO l'Emyrne repeatedly scored into their own net after a dispute in between their coach and the match referee.

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