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Al Ahly File Complaint Over Downs’ Ref

Al Ahly have filed an official complaint over the performance of the match official in their clash with Mamelodi Sundowns, saying he committed several mistakes which affected the game.

The ‘Club of the Century’ won the first leg of their CAf Champions League quarter-final against Masandawana 2-0.

However, they feel the result could’ve looked even more comfortable had another referee been in charge.

One of the biggest talking points was an incident when goalkeeper Denis Onyango jumped studs up into the back of Al Ahly forward Mohamed Sherif, but instead blowing for a penalty Senegalese official Maguette N’Diaye gave a free-kick for Downs.

The controversial incident as well as the ref’s overall performance caused Al Ahly to write an official complaint to CAF, requesting the implementation of VAR among other points.

“Al Ahly filed an official complaint to the Confederation of African Football (CAF) over the performance of the Senegalese referee, Maguette N’Diaye, who was in charge of our game against Mamelodi Sundowns in the first leg of the CAF Champions League quarter-finals, after committing several mistakes which affected the game’s result,” club said in a statement on their website.

“The club mentioned that the Senegalese referee denied Al Ahly a rightful penalty after the opponent’s goalkeeper committed a clear foul against Sherif inside the penalty area.

“Furthermore, the club added that the referee did not provide enough protection for our players during the match and that they were exposed to harsh tackles from Mamelodi Sundowns’ players. However, the opponent’s players received only one yellow card during the game, while the Senegalese referee showed three yellow cards to Al Ahly players.

“The referee gave our defender Badr Benoun a yellow card in the 20th minute of the game for wasting time, which is not logical for a home team player to waste time at the beginning of the match.

“Moreover, the club stressed in its complaint that referees commit several crucial mistakes that affect the outcome of the matches during the knockout stages and that these mistakes waste the efforts of the entire working system and squander millions of dollars that clubs spend on signing new players and coaching staff to reinforce the squad, besides the difficulties which the teams face during traveling to play their away games. 

“The club has also affirmed its full confidence in the fairness of the CAF and their eagerness to preserve all the rights of the competing teams, which is in the interest of the competition.

Also, the club urged the CAF to introduce additional monitoring on the performance of the referees to avoid such mistakes in the upcoming games.

“Finally, the club expressed its gratitude to be participating in the African competitions, but it also highlighted the importance of implementing the VAR technology in the next games to ensure justice and equality among all the competing teams, especially that Al Ahly has previously asked to apply the VAR technology starting from the competition’s group stage.”