16 September 2008 


MARITZBURG United defender Gary Goldstone has apologised for the elbowing incident that led to Kaizer Chiefs striker Tshepo Bulu being stretchered off in United’s 3-2 PSL win on Sunday.

Goldstone will face a club disciplinary hearing today. The defender has admitted he tried to commit a professional foul to stop Bulu getting past, but said he only meant to body-check the striker, not elbow him in the face.

Bulu will be out injured for just over a month with a fractured nose.
Goldstone said: “I’m disappointed in myself that my infringement clouded our victory. I admit I was trying to commit a professional foul, but that boy is so quick and he sold me a dummy.

“I wasn’t at all trying to hurt the player. He was going to get past me, so I wanted to do what most defenders would do and body-check him. But he sold me a dummy and my arm hit his face.
“I must state that the coach is not happy with me and that he and the club do not condone this sort of thing.

“I want to apologise to the player. I think he’s a very good young player and I never meant to injure him.”

United coach Gordon Igesund said he is elated at the performance of his team. Victory for United was never going to be easy because title contenders Chiefs were coming to KZN on successive cup and league defeats, and determined to turn around their form.

The match was marred by some controversy, with a disputed penalty call to Chiefs, a red card for Igesund and Ertugral walking out of the post-match conference,.

“Unfortunately, Muhsin has tried to turn everybody away from the game and turn it into something else because he lost,” Igesund said.

“But I think everyone who watched the game would have enjoyed the type of football we played.
“We were motivated, were turning 50/50s into 60/40s and applied exactly what we have been working on in training. I’m very proud of my players.

“The only blemish was the incident with Gary and he has explained himself. We as a club will not condone such actions, and that is why he is facing a hearing.

“These things can happen in high-profile games, with players putting out elbows to try to stop the opposition, but no-one gets injured. Because the player got injured, Muhsin was trying to use that to deflect from his team’s defeat.

“According to TV stats, they had 15 fouls and we had 11, so I believe we played the game hard, but fair.”

Igesund questioned his late dismissal for leaving the demarcated area around the bench to try to see a replay of Abdul Ebrahim’s penalty decision on a TV monitor.

“I took verbal abuse for 90 minutes from Muhsin without responding and where were the protests from the fourth official then?” he queried.

Marc Strydom

15 Sep 2008