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Patrick Tignyemb hits out at Bloemfontein Celtic management following untimely dismissal

22:58 GMT+4 09/05/2019
Patrick Tignyemb, Bloemfontein Celtic, October 2018
The former Celtic captain has opened up about his departure from the Free State giants
Cameroonian goalkeeper Patrick Tignyemb says he was fired by Bloemfontein Celtic for fighting for the players.

The 33-year-old shot-stopper's contract was surprisingly terminated by the Premier Soccer League (PSL) club on Tuesday with immediate effect.

Tignyemb explained that he was representing the players in talks with the club chairman, Max Tshabalala, regarding their outstanding bonuses.

“I was fighting for my players to get their salaries. I’m their captain and I had to fight for them," Tignyemb told Daily Sun.

“Throughout the seasons there were times when they (players) did not want to honour matches and as a leader, I would convince them to play. But now it’s enough," he added.

“As players, we had a nice meeting with the chairman, and he told us he didn’t have money. He begged us to honour our last league match against AmaZulu and promised we will be paid on 20 May," he explained.

Tignyemb, who had been on the books of Celtic since 2008, also accused Celtic chief executive officer Khumbulani Konco of allegedly 'blackmailing' the players into training ahead of their final PSL match of the season against AmaZulu FC on Saturday.

“Players agreed to that until Khumbulani (Konco) came with a letter blackmailing us. He said we must go to training if we fail to do so we will be fined. Fined for what while we are not getting paid? he asked.

"I told him that he was making me look stupid to my teammates. That letter pissed us off and I argued with him. Then the strike erupted again," he indicated.

Tignyemb, who was the longest serving player in the Celtic squad, confirmed that he was kicked out of the clubhouse by the club giving him two days (Wednesday and Thursday) to move out.

“I’m disappointed. Khumbulani does not appreciate. After all these years, now they are terminating my contract and kicking me out of the house with my family. Where will I go in two days? But I don’t regret any of this because I was fighting for my players,” he said.

“Throughout the seasons, there were times when they (players) didn’t want to honour matches and as their leader, I’d have meetings with players, convince them to go and play, but now it’s enough," he continued.

“Some players were getting money from my own pocket. They would tell me they are hungry, they do not have food and they can’t go to training without eating and I would give them my own money," he concluded.

Meanwhile, Konco insisted that Tignyemb was fired by the 2012 Telkom Knockout Cup champions because of an abusive rant he had with club officials.

“He (Tignyemb) is lying. We did not terminate his contract because of the strike. He came to the office swearing and kicking things. It was really bad. So as the club we had to act based on his personal contract, which is against disrespecting. For his behaviour, we had to take the decision," Konco said.

Konco, who is a former Orlando Pirates defender, also stated that Tignyemb was not given a time limit regarding vacating the clubhouse before disclosing that the team is busy preparing for their clash with AmaZulu.

“He must pack his bags and leave the house, but we did not give him a time limit. We all know when your contract is terminated, everything that is being paid by the team is no longer yours,” he said.

“The team will depart to Port Elizabeth tomorrow for the last match of the season,” he concluded.