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Benni McCarthy slams City of CT over stadium unavailability

Cape Town City FC coach Benni McCarthy has slammed the City of Cape Town officials for not having a stadium available for their crucial league encounter with Maritzburg United on 5 December.

Cape Town City FC coach Benni McCarthy. Picture: Cape Town City FC Facebook page

JOHANNESBURG - Cape Town City FC coach Benni McCarthy has slammed the city's officials for not having a stadium available for their league encounter against Maritzburg United.

In a scathing statement released on the club’s social media platforms, McCarthy says that football in Cape Town has been forced into exile and that the City’s officials have failed to plan and accommodate the club’s fixtures.

“Football has been sold lies in Cape Town. When there is a private wedding, the stadiums are ready. When there’s a rugby competition, the stadiums are ready. When there’s a nitro circus car event, the stadiums are ready. For football, Cape Town’s World Cup stadium – unavailable. Athlone Stadium – used by a thousand tenants and has become a sand patch. Newlands – unavailable. Make an emergency plan at another venue across the entire Western Cape – um, sorry we didn’t think that far ahead. But our fixtures are no secret? It’s about planning and willingness – and I cannot believe that our officials cannot see the immense commercial, cultural, and community impacts that Cape Town City FC has in this city,” McCarthy said in the statement.

The Cape Town Stadium where Cape Town City FC’s fixture against Maritzburg United was scheduled to take place is unavailable due to ongoing preparations ahead of the Cape Town leg of the World Sevens Series on the 9 and 10 December.

McCarthy believes that Football in Cape Town is playing second fiddle to other sports, more especially rugby.

“The only way the severity of this treatment can be understood is ironically through the eyes of rugby. Imagine the Stormers, with a chance to go top of the log, were told that they must play their next crucial home game against the Sharks in Durban. Season tickets sold, fans eagerly awaiting, and the players prepared to represent Cape Town. It’s hard to imagine it because it will never happen. Football people, although an overwhelming majority in this country, do not seem to count as much in Cape Town.”

Cape Town City’s fixture against Maritzburg United has been moved to the Princess Magogo Stadium in Durban.