Ajax Cape Town coach Muhsin Ertugral embraces striker Tendai Ndoro in celebration of their victory over Platinum Stars back in January. Photo: Chris Ricco/BackpagePix

DURBAN – Muhsin Ertugral has admitted that the absence of striker Tendai Ndoro is having a negative impact on Ajax Cape Town’s performances.

The Zimbabwean striker has been ordered to stop playing for the Urban Warriors as per the Fifa rules which state that a player may register for three clubs in a season, but cannot play for all of them.

Ndoro has played for three clubs this season – Orlando Pirates, Al-Faisaly in Saudi Arabia and Ajax.

Initially, the PSL’s Dispute Resolution Chamber (DRC) cleared the 32-year-old to play, but the League then appealed the decision.

At the arbitration hearing last week, Nassir Cassim referred the matter to Fifa and barred Ndoro from playing for Ajax pending a decision from football’s world governing body.

In response, Ndoro took the case to the Gauteng High Court, arguing that he was never paid a salary in Saudi Arabia, his right to work was under threat and the uncertainty of his situation was having an emotional and psychological effect on his well-being.

The High Court rejected the bid submitted by Ajax for Ndoro to be allowed to feature for Urban Warriors, for whom he has already appeared seven times in the league.

Speaking after a 2-1 defeat at AmaZulu on Tuesday night, Ertugral said: “It has affected me. One day they say I can use my strongest team, and the other day I can’t use it.

“You can imagine if Tendai was on the field tonight, with the chances that we had (created), I probably think we would have scored some.

“These are elements that are not easy for us. A player plays in the league here and goes overseas, and overseas he is not paid, and comes back to the league.

“There’s an overlapping season gap in there. It shows very clearly, and it should have been interpreted right,” Ertugral elaborated.

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Ajax are still second from the bottom and need to do well in their remaining five matches to survive.

“Fifa must also protect the players. It should clarify things. It is an issue that is simple.

“It says under one roof, under one federation, three clubs not possible (that you can play for them). That makes everyone to understand.

“They wanted to protect the players. What are the rules for? It is to protect the player and make sure that the player is not sold three times in one season and being pushed around. That’s the main reason for this rule.

“The boy played here 12 minutes and went overseas and has not been paid and used.

“So, now he must sit six months out? It doesn’t make sense for me. It is very clear it is an overlapping season,” Ertugral stated.

In Ndoro’s absence, Ajax have to rely on the likes of Yannick Zakri, Fagrie Lakay, Tashreeq Morris and Tori Losper for goals.

“What has been disappointing is that some of you guys have been writing about points deduction. It’s very clear, there is a gap in the rule that says overlapping season.

“The highest ruling body is the DRC in our league. It was their ruling that told me I can use him. So, what is the case now?

“Everybody is now guessing. Let us allow the people to decide what is happening. Obviously it is not good for us because one week he is in and one week is out.

“It shows where we are (on the log). I think the people who are supposed to make a decision will take the right one,” Ertugral concluded.

 

The Mercury