Katsande apologies for head butt
Kaizer Chiefs midfielder Willard Katsande has apologised for the red card he received last week that could see him out of international duty until mid-next year.
Katsande head butted an opponent last weekend in the African Nations Cup qualifier against Burundi, being immediately sent off with the game in Harare not yet a half-hour old.
Luckily for the tough-tackling midfielder, former Chiefs striker Knowledge Musona scored a much needed goal before halftime and the 10-man Zimbabwe held on for a narrow win in their first round, second leg qualifier which put them through to the last round of the preliminaries on the away goals rule.
Katsande had been provoked by an elbow from his Burundi opponent but denies it was a deliberate head butt.
“I was running to the main post so when I turned fast I head-butted him by accident,” he claimed. “I want to apologise to the whole nation as well as the technical team, who trusted me to help the team.”
He also told local reporters: “I just want to thank all my teammates for holding it together and getting that all important goal that now qualifies for us for the next round.”
A red card always results in a minimum one match suspension but being dismissed for violent conduct bring with it a suspension of a minimum of two games, which means that Katsande will miss Zimbabwe’s next two Nations Cup qualifiers.
But there is also a possibility that Katsande’s suspension could be even longer. There is a previous precedent for three-match ban after such a incident.
Should that be the case, the Chiefs hard man will then miss Zimbabwe’s first game at the Nations Cup finals in South Africa – should the Warriors qualify – but if they don’t, he won’t be able to play in the World Cup qualifier next March when Zimbabwe take on Egypt.
It could be that his first competitive game back after suspension will only come in June 2013 if the Confederation of African Football’s disciplinary committee take a dim view of the affair.