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SOCCER

Kaizer Chiefs slapped with fresh charges by Premier Soccer League

Kaizer Chiefs players during the Carling Black Label Cup match between Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs at Orlando Stadium on August 01, 2021 in Johannesburg, South Africa. (Photo by Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images)

The Soweto giants have been charged for naming two ineligible players in their squad in December 2021, the Premier Soccer League’s prosecutor confirmed.

In the latest twist of what seems will be another protracted Premier Soccer League (PSL) saga, akin to the 2020/2021 season drama involving Royal AM and Sekhukhune United, the league has slapped Kaizer Chiefs with new charges.

The Soweto giants are accused of listing two ineligible players on their team sheet, Aden McCarthy and Mduduzi Shabalala, for their match against Sekhukhune United in December 2021.

“I hereby confirm that Kaizer Chiefs football club has been charged for fielding two defaulters, namely Aden Tristan McCarthy and Mduduzi Shabalala, in the match between themselves and Sekhukhune football club, on 12 December 2021,” the PSL prosecutor Zola Majavu confirmed.

“These players were not properly registered for purposes of the DStv Premiership, but were registered for purposes of the reserve league. That is the basis of the allegations which they are facing. The matter has been enrolled for hearing on the 14th of April, 2022 at 2pm.”

After skipping two games due to a Covid-19 outbreak at Kaizer Chiefs Village in December, Amakhosi were able to put a team together for the match against Babina Noko. The team that emerged victorious in that game included McCarthy and Shabalala, who are part of Amakhosi’s DStv Diski Challenge side.

Though the two youngsters did not actually feature in the match itself, the fact that they were amongst the substitutes is the reason the league has charged Amakhosi. It is unclear though why it took the PSL four months to realise the oversight.

This latest development comes just a fortnight after the league confirmed that it will be heading to the high court. The PSL is seeking to have an arbitration ruling by Nazeer Cassim SC that Chiefs be allowed to play the two games they missed in December during the outbreak, set aside.

Amakhosi said the situation impacted more than 50 of their staff members, including members of the technical team, players and general personnel. As such, they couldn’t honour those fixtures. Cassim agreed.

However, the league is insistent that the PSL board of governors agreed prior to the start of the 2020/2021 campaign that Covid-19 would not be reason enough for matches to be postponed.

Amakhosi have vowed to fight to the bitter end, saying in a statement:

“The club will have no choice but to defend such a challenge as it is of the view that the arbitrator came to the lawful and reasonable conclusion that, it would have been negligent if not reckless for the club to field a team for the two games, and that Kaizer Chiefs acted as a responsible employer in the circumstances.”

The saga may yet derail the league’s conclusion, which is set for May 2022, if it drags out in court. DM

 

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