MASERU — The Vodacom Soccer Spectacular final between Matlama and Bantu will be replayed on December 18 at a venue to be announced later.
The game was abandoned on Sunday as a penalty shootout was about to be taken during the final at Setsoto Stadium. The sides had played to a 1-1 draw.
Organisers said they were forced to postpone the match because it was getting dark and there were no floodlights at the stadium.
This was reportedly after the stadium board failed to pay their bills.
But overall it was a chaotic end to what had been a good spectacle.
Matlama supporters hurled missiles onto the field and caused a brief delay just after Bantu’s late equaliser during injury time.
Matlama have since been charged by the Vodacom Soccer Spectacular management committee for the conduct of their supporters.
The club has been asked to respond in writing to the charges which could result in the club being fined M50 000.
A statement released by Vodacom Soccer Spectacular management committee chairman, Tlholo Letete, yesterday said the final would be replayed in a fortnight.
“The Vodacom Soccer Spectacular management committee having looked at the referee’s report regarding the abandoned match between Matlama and Bantu has resolved that the game be replayed in terms of article 3.12 read with article 1.2 of the Vodacom Soccer Spectacular rules as well as Law 7 of Fifa’s laws of the game on 18th December 2011 at a venue to be announced,” Letete said.
The venue is most likely to be Setsoto Stadium.
But there are many questions that require answers concerning Sunday’s events.
The match had just ended 1-1 after Bantu captain Tlali Maile’s last minute equaliser from the penalty spot.
A Matlama player was adjudged to have handled the ball in the penalty box and Maile’s goal cancelled out Jane Thabantšo’s opener for Matlama.
The goal sparked chaos.
While Bantu supporters celebrated Matlama supporters began to hurl missiles onto the pitch. The melee lasted for almost 10 minutes.
When the game finally kicked off and ended, more confusion ensued.
There was also no clear communication as to the decision that had been taken and why.
The lack of organisation was the same outside the venue with the shambles causing some supporters to attempt to get back into the stadium.
But despite this it was still an exciting final and an entertaining two days of the Vodacom Soccer Spectacular.
Matlama though will still be kicking themselves.
Tse Putsoa should have had the game sown up long before the final whistle but they were wasteful in front of goal.
After taking a first half lead Matlama were by far the superior side. Although both teams looked nervous and gave the ball away plenty of times, it was Tse Putsoa who looked more at home in the final and pinned Bantu back for almost the entire match.
Conditions deteriorated terribly with a whirlwind making play tough, but both teams soldiered on until the late drama.
Meanwhile, the match between Lioli and Bantu, which was supposed to be played in Teyateyaneng on Sunday, has been postponed because both sides have players in the Lesotho side at the Cosafa Under-20 Youth Championships in Botswana.
The rest of the matches on the fixture schedule will go ahead.
LDF vs Linare (Ratjomose)
Majantja vs Maduma (Mohale’s Hoek)
Joy vs LMPS (TSL Ground)
Mpharane Celtics vs LCS (St Michaels)