PSL must come down hard on violent fans to stop the rot

PSL must come down hard on violent fans to stop the rot
From ESPN - April 12, 2018

South African football has the worrying tendency to continually shoot itself in the foot, and the violent scenes at the finish of the Absa Premiership clash between Kaizer Chiefs are Chippa United last weekend are just another example.

There was a time when violence at matches was fairly commonplace, driving families away from games and hurting the image of the local league.

Frustrated fans would fight among themselves, rip up seats and throw any other manner of objects onto the pitch to show their displeasure.

Those scenes had been growing fewer and fewer over the years, but in the last two seasons, there's been a worrying return to those days.

The despicable violence meted out by Orlando Pirates supporters during their 6-0 loss to Mamelodi Sundowns in February last year remain unpunished, although the club has been found guilty of failing to control their fans.

We are only told that the punishment will be handed down when the PSL's Disciplinary Committee convenes this year, but it's already midway through April.

This is, of course, nothing short of an attempt to stall the process, but while there is no sight of justice being done, it emboldens others to act the same in the belief that they too will go unpunished.

Therefore, there was little surprise when we had the ugly scenes at the FNB Stadium on Saturday, as Chiefs lost 3-0 to Chippa United to finally end any realistic hope of lifting the Absa Premiership title.

Bottles and other objects thrown from just above the entrance to the tunnel pelted the players and coach Steven Komphela as they left the pitch after the game.

There was no security in sight, nor any police to stop what was rampant vandalism and, one could say, a blatant criminal case of assault.


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