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Ajax feud erupts again

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Ajax Cape Towns current owners say the clubs founding father is trying to sabotage the Urban Warriors. Photo by Lefty Shivambu / Gallo Images

Ajax Cape Town’s current owners say the club’s founding father is trying to sabotage the Urban Warriors.

Ajax’s Honorary Life Chairman John Comitis has been banned from the club’s premises because he is “luring” talented players away from Ajax’s famed youth academy.

Ajax Cape Town were formed in 1999 by Comitis and Rob Moore after the amalgamation of Cape Town Spurs and Seven Stars. Ajax Amsterdam is the majority shareholder of the club.

“We didn’t want to lock John out of the club or anything, but then we realised that he was coming every Friday, when the Under-19s play, to talk to the parents,” Ajax’s executive director Ari Efstathiou told the Cape Times.

“What’s happening now, it’s quite easy to let Ajax do all the work and then poach our players. And it’s quite clear that John is luring players away. All you have do is go to the homes of these kids.”

Efstathiou says Comitis has already taken talented goalkeeper Samora Motloung to National First Division club FC Cape Town, where Comitis is now an executive director after he and his brother, George, sold their shares in Ajax before the start of this season.

Ajax disputed the validity of Motloung’s contract with FC Cape Town, saying that the player already has a professional contract with Ajax. However, a Safa Player Status Committee ruled that, although the player was contracted to Ajax, he was free to move to any other club of his choice.

“We have since appealed the ruling because it makes no sense whatsoever,” Efstathiou said.

Ajax have also written a letter to the Premier Soccer League (PSL) to complain that Comitis “is acting as an agent and that he is undermining the club that put him on the PSL’s executive committee”. The League’s spokesperson Luxolo September confirmed yesterday that the letter has been brought to the attention of the league’s chairman Irvin Khoza.

However, Comitis hit back at Efstathiou’s allegations, asking “how does it suit me to sabotage a child that I gave birth to?”

“But what I won’t do is watch it (Ajax) being destroyed in the manner in which it is being operated, and that is my personal opinion. As an honorary life chairman, I’m still in contact with Amsterdam, and all I want is to see this club back in the top five.”

Comitis also says the club’s new owners “are hypocrites, as they had been luring players from other clubs for years”.

“Ajax now have to adjust to the fact that people are now targeting them after they have taken players from every other club.

“Maybe they should be asking themselves why the kids want to leave, instead of blaming me. The parents come to my office for advice, and I’m not going to lie to them.

“Players didn’t want to leave the club when me and George were in charge.” - Cape Times


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