Rest Mutore, Sports Reporter
. . . fans destroy B/F equipment
HIGHLANDERS have condemned the violent behaviour by some of their fans in the team’s 2-0 defeat to FC Platinum in the Castle Challenge Cup on Saturday.
Bosso chairman Rtd Colonel Kenneth Mhlophe, in a statement, said they did not condone any form of violence urging fans to refrain from unruly behaviour.
The match was stopped in additional time after FC Platinum fans invaded the pitch for refuge after they threatened by the opposite fans.
“Highlanders Football Club would like to express its absolute disgust about the pitch invasion and missile throwing incidents that transpired on Saturday the 14th of March, during the Castle Challenge Cup match played against FC Platinum at Barbourfields Stadium,”
“The ugly incidents that marred a potentially good sporting event reflect badly on our football, Highlanders FC as a brand and various stakeholders involved in this beautiful game. We would like to urge all football loving fans to refrain from such acts of hooliganism that stunt the growth of the sport as they scare away potential sponsors and partners,” said Rtd Mhlophe.
With FC Platinum leading after a Silas Songani brace in the first half, Bosso fans failed to stomach the result and went wild.
The Black and white army rioted, destroying perimeter fence stalling the progress being made by the Bulawayo City Council to meet the minimum Confederation of African Football (CAF) standards to host international matches.
Rtd Mhlophe apologised to all stakeholders affected by the behaviour of the fans saying are working on measures to avoid that in the future.
“As Highlanders F.C, we want to take this opportunity to apologise to all stakeholders who were affected by the incidents, and give an assurance that as a club, we are working tirelessly to decontaminate our football of this vice. With the assistance of key actors in the game, we will look into how we can better our security and crowd control skills for future football events,” he said.
Bosso are also grateful of the work being done at Barbourfields.
“The club also notes with gratefulness the amount of work that the Government of Zimbabwe, Bulawayo City Council and other stakeholders involved have done in uplifting Barbourfields stadium generally and particularly the playing pitch, which was in pristine condition for the match. Thus, the lifting and throwing of watering pipes that were stored between the touch line advertising space and the Soweto stand perimeter fence by violent fans is uncalled for, and stand unequivocally condemned by the club,”
“Violence has no place in football. Football is a family sport, and the stadium should provide a conducive environment for football loving people to bring their families,” he said.