FORMER Flames goalkeeper, Simplex Nthala’s three-year ban has been reduced to a year following his Mozambican club, Maxaquene’s successful appeal to the r country’s National Football League’s Constitutional Council.
The ex-MTL Wanderers custodian confirmed the slashing of the ban he received from the Mozambique league’s disciplinary committee alongside Maxaquene team mate, Zabula, in July for assaulting referee Antonio Munguambe during an illtempered game against Desportivo de Nacala.
“The issue is now in the hands of our lawyers who want to appeal further and have the ban reduced to, at least, six months maximum and three months minimum,” said Nthala, who denies the offence that has cost him the Flames and club career.
Before the ban, Nthala’s 10 clean-sheets in 14 games put Maxaquene on top of the Mozambique league table. Following Nthala’s ban, Maxaquene have since slipped to second position.
Compatriot Chimango Kaira’s Costa do Sol top the standings. Nthala and defender Zabula confronted the referee after he allowed Nacala’s goal the duo felt striker Marufo, scored with a hand.
Maxaquene coach Chiquinho Conde has since described the duo’s punishment as unfair. The former Mozambican international cited João Pinto who assaulted a referee at the World Cup 2002 and was only suspended for six months.
“We were dictating the league championship, but after excluding the two players, we started conceding goals. The two players were indispensable in our defence,” Conde told Mozambican newspaper, Journal Noticias.
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