Al Ahly head coach Pitso Mosimane has revealed that he gave his runners-up medal to a photographer after losing the CAF Champions League final to Wydad Athletic Club last weekend.
Mosimane and his Red Devils were eager to win a third successive African title but fell to a 2-0 loss instead.
During the medal ceremony and trophy handover, Al Ahly players were seen quickly removing their runners-up medals from around their necks, with Mamelodi Sundowns senior coach Steve Komphela calling it a "lack of respect" shown by the players as he shared his views on Twitter.
"It's so disgusting watching players given medals and disrespectfully pulling them out of their necks. Lack of respect. Class? No matter how you feel, you must always maintain class, dignity and respect. So sad," Komphela said.
It’s so disgusting watching players given medals and disrespectfully pulling them out of their necks. Lack of respect. Class? No matter how you feel, you must always maintain class, dignity and respect. So sad. ??— Steve Komphela (@komphelasteve) May 30, 2022
In an interview with SABC Sport, Mosimane defended his players and revealed that he gave his medal away.
"I don't play for silver medals; I play for gold," Mosimane said as quoted by SABC Sport.
"Don't give me a silver medal, I don't want it. I took my silver medal off, I gave it to the photographer."
Mosimane further explained that he is still not content with CAF's decision to award Morocco the right to host the final especially so late in the Champions League campaign.
The Moroccan Football Federation were the last one standing bidding for the final after Senegal withdrew from vying for their honours, as CAF awarded the rights to the north African nation.
"Have you understood why? Where was the final played? In Morocco. Where did the CAF president put the final, where and when was that decision made?" he said.
"You can’t tell me I must tell my players to keep their medals. You know me; I'm direct. I speak to the relevant person, direct. It’s not for the public; it’s not for media, I tell you straight.
"Look at the podium. I was speaking to the podium. Normally I go there, I take my medal, and I walk away. This time I was speaking to them. I spoke to FIFA, and I spoke to CAF, because I speak my mind. You might not like me, but don’t dim my light. Be fair.
"If I want the third Champions League, I work for it. Be fair, be good because everybody can see, and the world can see."
Mosimane will again be in the dugout as his Al Ahly charges shift their focus to the Egypt Cup in a Round of 32 encounter against Massry Salloum on Sunday.