Football Sport

FAZ should deal with hooligans

Soccer Review with STEPHEN PHIRI
I AM allergic to violence and whenever it shows its ugly head, I do not hesitate to condemn it.
Violence has no place in all spheres of life, including football and sport at large.
Hell broke loose at Shinde Stadium last Saturday during the Super Division Week 19 match between ‘Mighty’ Mufulira Wanderers and Zesco United.
Reason? Wanderers fans could not believe that their team was trailing. They claimed there was a foul on a Wanderers player prior to Winston Kalengo scoring.
I am sure Gladys Lengwe, a FIFA referee, could have blown for a foul if it was committed.
The behaviour of the fans has dented the image of Wanderers.
‘Mighty’ have won nine Super Division titles, three behind record holders Nkana.
Wanderers have won 40 trophies and the fans should be proud of this achievement.
The Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) should come down heavily on culprits.
I am happy no life was lost but we need to stamp out violence completely.
This is the second time violence has erupted at a football match in a space of one month.
Power Dynamos fans resorted to violence after seeing their team going down 2-0 to Zesco on July 9 at Arthur Davies Stadium in Kitwe.
FAZ should not hesitate to punish clubs that resort to violence when results are not in their favour.
Fans or club administrators should know that there are three results in any game – win, draw and lose and those who think they will be winning all the time should not be near stadiums.
In our country, football is a unifier that brings people together.
In other words, football is second to religion.
I am happy FAZ president Kalusha Bwalya, a former Wanderers striker, and other one-time ‘Mighty’ players condemned the violence that erupted at Shinde Stadium.
Shinde Stadium is not known for violence and the Wanderers executive should crack a whip on those fans that caused the abandonment of the match.
It is better to have few obedient fans than to have a cadre of unruly supporters who are bent on causing trouble.
Super Division clubs should consider investing in closed-circuit television (CCTV) so that culprits could easily be identified and face the wrath of the law.
I am eagerly waiting for the FAZ ruling for the two incidents so far.
Let those with ears hear and keep me posted on sphiri@,

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