South African FA President Danny Jordaan has suggested that concerns about the socio-political implications if Ghana had lost last Sunday’s FIFA World Cup Qualifier against the Bafana Bafana may have resulted in incidents of match manipulation.
Addressing a press briefing on Wednesday at SAFA House in Nasrec, Johannesburg, Mr Jordaan said SAFA’s suggestions was based on news reports from Ghana which said there was a massive interest in the match outside of football.
He said although those reports could be an expression of patriotism, SAFA had asked FIFA to investigate those reports.
“You have seen the articles saying that if Ghana loses this match there will be major problems even for the President of the country and there was another one which said Ghana will get at least one penalty,” he stressed.
Mr Jordaan appeared to have been making reference to an interview where the National Communications Officer of the National Democratic Congress, Mr Sammy Gyamfi stated that Ghanaians won’t forgive President Akufo-Addo if the Black Stars fail to qualify for the play-offs.
According to Mr Jordaan, SAFA also wants FIFA to investigate suspicious betting spikes before the penalty was awarded by Senegalese Referee Maguette Ndiaye against South Africa.
“We don’t have the capacity to do that, so we have asked FIFA to do that”.
Mr Jordaan said SAFA wants FIFA to use its 2016 ruling when it ordered a replay of a World Cup qualifier after a penalty was awarded to the Bafana Bafana in a 2-1 win over Senegal.
“We were not convinced that there was integrity in the decision-making in this match and we want to place the matter before FIFA to make the final decision before, they have a huge capacity for investigating this matter”.
It will be recalled that the Black Stars of Ghana defeated the Bafana Bafana of South Africa 1-0 last Sunday at the Cape Coast Stadium to qualify for the play-offs for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
The goal which was scored by Ghana captain Andre Ayew came from the penalty spot after Ghana defender Daniel Amartey was fouled.
Replays of the incident show that South Africa defender Rushine de Reuck held the Leicester man after a corner was floated in his direction by Daniel Kyere.
Senegalese Referee Maguette Ndiaye awarded the penalty which was converted by Ayew.
Ghana had trailed South Africa by three points heading into the match and victory was the only result required to seal qualification to the third round of the qualifiers while the South Africans had only needed a draw.
SAFA has since filed a complaint to FIFA to investigate the match for alleged referee bias and suspected match manipulation.