Zimbabwe: Pfumbidzai Red Card Cost Celtic

Zimbabwe international Ronald Pfumbidzai saw red as his clumsy marking cost Bloemfontein Celtic silverware in the MTN8 final against South African football giants Orlando Pirates at Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday.

The challenge resulted in the penalty that decided the final of the MTN8 final. Pirates, who are home to another Zimbabwean, Terrence Dzvukamanja, walked away deserved winners following a comeback 2-1 victory.

Dzvukamanja, however, was not part of the Buccaneers on Saturday. His compatriot, Pfumbidzai was the fall guy as his error eventually cost Celtic their first silverware in a long period and a chance to pocket R8 million.

The winning strike was more gifted by Celtic who failed to deal with Bucs keeper Richard Ofori’s long range clearance and the ball went all the way to the box where Pfumbidzai was found guilty of pulling back Pirates forward Thembinkosi Lorch.

The referee Luxolo Badi pointed to the spot and gave the Zimbabwean defender his marching orders just over five minutes after returning from the half-time break.

With a one-man advantage, Pirates dominated more though they were guilty of missing a number of gilt-edged scoring opportunities.

But there was some bit of debate on the red card on Pfumbidzai, with some Celtics fans arguing that the referee was harsh on their man.

However, journalist Thomas Mlambo explained on his Twitter account that the penalty and the red card were above board.

“Foul started outside the box but online into the box . . . I think that’s what the ref saw and red card is (spot-on) because Lorch was denied a clear goal scoring opportunity and Pfumbidzai did not make an attempt to play the ball . . . he just pulled Lorch… rules say that’s a red card,” said Mlambo.

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