Pretoria - Following his side’s 2-1 Premiership defeat at Loftus Versfeld on Sunday, Moroka Swallows boss Zeca Marques accused referee Lwandile Mfiki of favouring Mamelodi Sundowns and launched a heated tirade against the game’s officiating.
“I thought the win was handed to them (Sundowns) on a platter… for various reasons,” Marques said after the game.
“I don’t think it’s a coincidence that things like this happen in football and you don’t have the protection of the referee.
“I think there are different rules for different teams which is the sad part for me, especially when you consider that both teams came out here to play football.”
Swallows were reduced to 10 men with 20 minutes left to play, but prior to the red card, striker Siyabonga Nomvethe was involved in a nasty collision on the edge of the Sundowns area.
The veteran attacker was forced to leave the field and was rushed to the change-room, where he received stitches to his forehead.
Marques was adamant his player should have been awarded a free-kick and that Sundowns goalkeeper Kennedy Mweene should have been booked.
“Nomvethe was steamrolled by their goalkeeper.
“He cracked his head, he took stitches and is a key players.
“I think we could have stolen a point. There’s no doubt. All being fair, we could have left here with a draw.”
In reply, Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane dismissed any talk of his team targeting opposition players.
“Sundowns is not a dirty team. We don’t go out to kick other players,” Mosimane said.
“I think this is the first time I’ve [been accused] heard this.
“Do you call that targeting a player? A 50-50 chance with the goalkeeper? The player must pull out if he doesn’t want to get hurt.
“With Nomvethe, it was a 50-50 incident with the goalkeeper… we don’t target players, end of story.”
Mosimane preferred to talk up his team’s performance on the day, against a side who had not lost to the Brazilians in seven previous outings.
“It was a big game that we expected to win,” Mosimane said.
“We played proper from the beginning. To be honest, I never thought we would lose this match and we didn’t.
“We’ve been losing to Swallows all this time. It was about time that we beat Swallows.”
Sunday’s victory put Mosimane’s team two points clear at the top of the table, ahead of Kaizer Chiefs and Platinum Stars in third.
“I think we had the attitude and the hunger… we showed that we wanted to win it and I’m happy we won it,” the former Bafana Bafana mentor added.“We did what we had to do. We were dangerous up front. We have the speed up front and we have the energy to score goals.”