CT City denies Benni tunnel slap

Benni McCarthy (Gallo Images)
Benni McCarthy (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Cape Town City have denied that head coach Benni McCarthy slapped the technical director of Costa do Sol during a tunnel bust-up.

McCarthy was involved in a heated exchange with the coaching staff of the Mozambican club in the tunnel at Athlone Stadium during their first-round second-leg CAF Confederation Cup clash on Sunday.

The Absa Premiership club failed to qualify for the group stages, crashing out of the tournament on the away goals rule having lost 2-1 at home (2-2 on aggregate).

According to a report on the TimesLIVE website, altercations started in the first-half of the match when the former Bafana Bafana striker was fuming in his technical area and had words with the opposing bench.

As players and staff left the field of play after Ethiopian referee Belay Tadesse called for half-time, McCarthy confronted his counterpart Fabio Costas in the tunnel where the pair reportedly exchanged strong words in Spanish.

It was reported that McCarthy barged his shoulder into Costas before the two became involved in a scuffle as players and staff tried to diffuse the situation.

The report further states that McCarthy raised his hand and slapped Costa do Sol's technical director Arturo Faria which was not seen by the match officials.

City's media officer Julian Bailey confirmed to Sport24 on Monday that there was an altercation in the tunnel between the two teams, but "no slaps or smacks" were exchanged as security diffused the situation. 

It's been a controversial debut season for McCarthy as a professional head coach.

During his first league iKapa derby match, the 40-year-old was involved in a touchline dispute with Ajax Cape defender Isaac Nhlapo and was caught on camera using foul language.

For the away fixture of the derby clash, McCarthy stole the headlines as he and Ajax mentor Muhsin Ertugral clashed in the technical area which resulted in the former striker being sent to the stands by the referee.

McCarthy has also been vocal about his opinions, which has landed him in hot water.

The coach was recently fined R50 000 by the Premier Soccer League for branding referee Phillip Tinyani a 'cow' after last October's 2-1 loss to Chippa United.

City's next match is against Golden Arrows at Cape Town Stadium on Wednesday, April 4.


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