Chippa United coach Joel Masutha feels match officials have been treating them unfairly, as if they are “relegation candidates” by denying them fair penalty decisions.
The Chilli Boys had two penalty shouts turned down before falling to a third successive Absa Premiership defeat, with Orlando Pirates having earned a penalty of their own to go on and win 4-2 at the Orlando Stadium on Tuesday evening.
Shouts for a handball as the ball looked to have struck Pirates debutant Alfred Ndengane on the hand inside his own box on either side of half-time were waved away by the referee, and Masutha bemoaned the recent reluctance of officials to make calls in their favour.
“If you check, even the penalty in the game against Wits, people say it was a penalty but that was the first time I saw that kind of penalty [awarded],” said Masutha.
“Maybe it was a penalty [against Vincent Pule], I don’t know. But when you’re down there, nobody respects you and they will never treat you the same. We’re treated as relegation candidates.
“If you check decisions, the referee didn’t blow for that penalty, but the linesman is the one who flagged, and then the very same linesman – in the first half there was a clear handball from the defender [Ndengane] – he was supposed to give a penalty, but he didn’t.
“And you know, when you ask, he just says, ‘No, sorry.’ You feel that those kinds of things [happen] because you’re down there [at the bottom of the log]. So, when you’re down there it’s tougher.”
Nonetheless, the former Black Leopards mentor has urged his troops to soldier on due to the nature of their circumstances, rather than depend on assistance from referees.
“We just have to try and know that when we’re playing, we need to triple our efforts, especially against a team like Pirates, who have quality, so you have to match them with effort,” he added.
“It’s also maybe for the middle-man to give certain decisions your way, but you need to toughen up [because] I don’t think it’s going to stop. Who respects teams that are down there? No one.
“They [officials] also feel like maybe they are giving us favours if they give a penalty. It’s something we have to deal with, and we always talk about fighting and playing as if we are playing against 14 or 15 [opposition players].”
Article by: Chad Klate (@CKlatey)