NATIONAL Assembly coach George Kapembwa has defended his action to spit at Nkana winger Fred Tshimenga in a fierce MTN/FAZ Super League week 22 match at Nkana stadium on Tuesday, saying he may have been provoked.
With the match tied at 2-2 in the 79th minute and the home side in dominance, a verbal exchange ensued between the Assembly technical bench and Tshimenga who was taking a throw-in near the visitors’ dugout, resulting in one of the assistants being sent off.
Kapembwa, in anger, spat at Tshimenga which caused uproar on social media when the incident was replayed several times on SuperSport television.
Asked if he did not fear sanctions for his actions, Kapembwa claimed he did not spit at the player until he was reminded that his actions were captured by TV cameras and replayed several times.
“I don’t remember spitting at a player. Sometimes we are in the limelight you didn’t hear what that player told me but if I do something then I will be penalised… if it really happened [spitting], you don’t just do that unless you are provoked,” said Kapembwa in post-match interviews.
“Sometimes in football, it is just like that. I have always said it is very difficult for a coach to imitate…we want to grow in this game but when decisions are questionable, you just have to react.”
Kapembwa was in charge of his second game since he took over Assembly and said he was confident his team will survive relegation despite lying 16th on the table.
And Chambeshi said he was increasingly worried that his side which was in the title chase was getting inconsistent results at home.
He said he was happy with his executive’s move to reinforce weaker departments, especially the defence which has been giving away silly goals.
“It is worrisome but I am happy that the executive have acquired a defender for us from Kenya. I hope he will have a good time…Nkana is a big team, we need to challenge for the league. As coaches, we know what points you need to win the league and what points to be demoted. We have to fight and see where we can end the league,” said Chambeshi whose side moved into 4th position on goal difference.
In the earlier match, Kitwe United produced a stellar performance to beat Power Dynamos 1-0 courtesy of Emmanuel Chabula’s first half goal