Matlama to fight M230 000 fine

MASERU — Matlama Football Club say they will fight the M230 000 fine imposed on the club by the Vodacom Soccer Spectacular organising committee for bringing the game of football into disrepute.

The club was on Monday fined M150 000 after their supporters threw missiles onto the pitch during the replay of the Spectacular final last month.

Tse Putsoa had also been fined M70 000 for their supporters’ behaviour when they threw missiles into the stadium during the final against Bantu on November 27.

The organising committee also confirmed the M10 000 fine imposed on Matlama during the 2010 Soccer Spectacular.

In total, Matlama were fined M230 000 with M160 000 payable within seven working days from Monday.

But Matlama communications and marketing manager, Lesolle Phalatsi, told the Lesotho Times yesterday that they were going to fight these fines.

“No one is and will never take away that kind of money from Matlama,” Phalatsi said.

“This is our money and we’ve worked very hard for it and we are not going to allow people who fail to do their job to take our money.”

Phalatsi said it was ridiculous for the organising committee to fine Matlama M230 000 at a go.

“It is totally ridiculous of them to fine one team M230 000 while in other countries teams who win as much as M10 million per competition have never been fined this much,” Phalatsi said.

He said the organising committee did not have a right to fine them in the first place.

“The same people who failed to open the gates on time during the replay, who turned our game into a beer festival and failed to search people when entering the stadium, want to fine us?

“These are the same people who are complainants, prosecutors and judges in the cases against Matlama.

“I want to tell everyone that we are going to fight from all angles and are not going to allow anyone to take our money from us,” Phalatsi insisted.

He said they were scheduled to host a meeting last night to chart the way forward.

“We are having a meeting tonight to advise ourselves on how we are going to tackle this but we are definitely going to fight back,” he said.

“We’ve appealed the first fine of M70 000 and before it can even be addressed, we are again fined M150 000 and another M10 000 is reinstated.”

Matlama lifted the 2011 Vodacom Soccer Spectacular and became only the second side to win the competition twice since its inception in 2008.

The club walked away with a cool M360 000.

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