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HomeNedbank CupMokwena Questions Ref After Nedbank Cup Defeat

Mokwena Questions Ref After Nedbank Cup Defeat

Mamelodi Sundowns coach Rulani Mokwena has insisted the referee made the wrong call over Orlando Pirates penalty in the Nedbank Cup final.

Pirates received a contentious penalty in the second half when Aubrey Modiba was adjudged to have fouled Patrick Maswanganyi before the Bucs playmaker stepped up to score the equaliser.

The Buccaneers went on the win the game thanks to a last-minute goal by teenage sensation Relebohile Mofokeng, beating Mokwena and Sundowns in the second cup final this season.

However, Mokwena argued that it should have been a foul on Modiba instead the other way around.

“We got the penalty from a clear decision, I’ve just watched all the key decisions, and then we don’t score that,” he said after the game.

“And then the game drags a little bit for a 0-0 until the until half-time but still again very comfortable, so much control so much. In fact, I think one of our better performances this season and to dominate a game like that, a cup final like that against a very strong team like Orlando Pirates and then not to win is is bittersweet.

“Because you look at the performance and you know you deserve better but like I said to the players even in my team talk ‘Cup finals are not there to be played they are there to be won’.

“And of course I think also some of the key moments in the game didn’t go for us, the penalty we missed, I just saw the penalty they got given – I thought Tito actually fouls Aubrey Modiba to be honest, I watched it again and again and I think it’s actually a foul of Mamelodi Sundowns and it should be going the other way.

“And I’m not so sure about the foul on Marcelo Allende because there was two or three incidents where similar situations happened for Bongani Zungu and for Mosa [Lebusa] and actually the foul was given the other direction.

“But Cup finals are like that, games like this are about small details, about moments and unfortunately the moments in the 90 minutes today didn’t go for us.

“So you’ve got to congratulate the winners Orlando Pirates and be gracious in defeat, and congratulate them for defending the Nedbank Cup trophy.”

Mokwena was later again asked whether it was a potentially “contentious decision” by the referee and expressed his frustration once more, but also admitted Modiba could’ve done better.

“It’s gonna sound like excuses guys, I watched the penalty that they got and really, Tito is not even looking at the ball and he moves his back and he slides into Modiba,” he added.

“Modiba could have done a bit better and anticipated a little bit better in that situation and not gone tight because if you read the body language of Maswanganyi, it’s not even to go into the situation and compete for the ball.

“So maybe it’s to allow him to try – it’s a very difficult ball, it’s in the air and it’s coming at very high speed – maybe it’s to allow him to receive first and just keep your position and then apply pressure and force him a little bit back.

“But it’s football, these things happen, you lose games with these things that happen. How difficult it is? It’s very difficult, but it is what it is because it’s the game of football, you can’t say we didn’t play well, you can’t say we didn’t deserve to win, you can’t fault the players for effort.”

David Kappel
David Kappel
David Kappel has served as a renowned international editor and content manager for almost a decade. David specialises in ensuring content and social media posts are highly engaging for football fans and was previously the international editor at Soccer Laduma. He is currently the iDiski Times website editor and social strategist.