Cobbe Barracks coach Chifundo Masapula has blamed the Southern Region Football League (SRFL) for his side’s failed TNM Super League promotion bid.
Cobbe finished second by a three-point gap to promoted Chikhwawa United in the Premier Division on Saturday after 4-2 and 6-2 wins over Green Hawks and Zomba United respectively.
“We are glad that the season has ended in good time. The only problem is that the league did not listen to genuine concerns we raised throughout the season,” Masapula said in a post-match interview at Kamuzu Stadium.
He faulted the league for allowing Chikhwawa referees to handle United’s matches despite reports of favouritism.
“We have always complained about officiation and even suggested the swapping of referees at venues such as Chikhwawa, but they ignored us even when some were willing to pay for the referees’ expenses,” he said.
But SRFL general secretary George Pagaja deflected the blame to the Southern Region Referees Committee which allocates the referees.
“Cobbe have always complained. Other teams go to Chikhwawa and play. Referees are like contracted to us. We do not allocate referees to games. Whenever there are complaints, we raise them with the referees committee,” said Pagaja.
Another constraint in rotating referees was that it was expensive, he argued.
“Any way, we are happy that the championship has been decided. It has been a competitive season,” Pagaja noted.
Cobbe finished with 81 points—three points behind Chikhwawa.