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2022 World Cup qualifiers: Ghana respond to Fifa with 'severe' punishment calls for protesting South Africa

5:03 PM GMT+8 21/11/2021
Alexander Djiku Ghana
The West Africans have sent a reply to the world football governing body on the back of being accused of match manipulation

The Ghana Football Association has urged Fifa to dismiss South Africa’s match-fixing protest “with a punitive fine and a huge cost” for, among other things, “bringing the brand of the World Cup and Ghana’s senior team into disrepute”.

The GFA made the call in their official response to the world football governing body in the wake of match-fixing, match manipulation, corruption and bribery allegations made by their South African counterparts following a clash between the two nations in the World Cup qualifiers on November 14.

Ghana, playing at home in Cape Coast, recorded a 1-0 win in the Group G final matchday tie to reach the next round of the qualifiers, Andre Ayew scoring the decisive goal from the penalty spot after Daniel Amartey went down in the box under the challenge of Rushine De Reuck.

The aftermath of the game has seen nothing but accusations and counter-accusations from the two nations, as South Africa alleged that the match may have been fixed to aid Ghana’s qualification, particularly singling out the penalty call by Senegalese referee Maguette N’Diaye.

In the response to Fifa signed by GFA general secretary Prosper Harrison Addo, the West Africans are calling for the protest to be rejected on multiple grounds, including South Africa’s “improper” lodging of an initial oral protest to the match commissioner, which “violates the provisions of the regulations for the competition and the Disciplinary Code of Fifa”, which stipulates that any such complaint be lodged “in writing” and “within two hours”.

Again, the GFA emphasised that “a full written report, including copies of the original protest, be sent by email to the Fifa general secretary within 24 hours of the end of the match”, another provision which was violated by the complainants.

The GFA goes on to state again that South Africa’s protest should have been accompanied by a protest fee, as stated by regulations, but that was not the case, as the protest letter to Fifa stated that the protest fee would be paid later, thus rendering the appeal “void and a nullity”.

Furthermore, Ghana believes that South Africa sent “the respected Fifa Disciplinary Committee on a fool’s errand or fishing” by only making allegations without claims by their initial protest letter to Fifa, and requests that the latter be punished “severely”.

Last but not least, the GFA holds the opinion that South Africa has cast “fake doubts on the integrity of the World Cup brand and the Black Stars” and behaviour which deserved “severe fine and cost”.