The South African Football Association (SAFA) has allowed only amateur soccer teams that compete in the ABC Motsepe league to return to training amid the Covid-19 pandemic. League matches will resume on the first week of March with no spectators.
The league was stopped in December last year to allow players to go home for Christmas, before the president announced the level three lockdown.
The Vhembe region has four teams that played in SAFA Limpopo’s ABC Motsepe League, namely Mikhado FC, Munaca FC, Vhembe Football Academy and the new team Mpheni Home Defenders, who bought the status of Tshakhuma RO Nandilani.
SAFA’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr Tebogo Motlanthe, said that they will keep a close eye to ensure that Covid-19 protocols are being followed. All teams competing in the ABC Motsepe league will be playing in a stadium, and not on open grounds.
He appealed to teams, as well as SAFA’s local structures, to adhere to the association’s Covid-19 health and safety directives at all times to mitigate the risk of spreading the virus.
Motlanthe said that the association would like all amateur teams to implement registers for use during training sessions and matches. All teams are to buy scanners to monitor temperatures at all times, and no spectators are allowed at training sessions and matches.
“All the teams have to be ready, because the league has to be played in order to finish their league programme,” he said.
Motlanthe warned people who organise non-official tournaments and social games, which have been reported around the country since level three of lockdown started, to stop. “The current measures are for professional soccer players who are able to play behind closed doors and we will see what happens when lockdown levels go down again.”
He reminded teams that amateur football, from district to local league levels, remain suspended until communicated otherwise.
Date:11 February 2021 - By: Kaizer Nengovhela
Kaizer Nengovhela started writing stories for Limpopo Mirror more than a decade ago, in 2 000. Prior to that he had a five year stint at Phala-Phala FM as sports presenter. In 2005 Kaizer received an award from the province's premier as Best Sports Presenter. The same year he was also nominated as Best Sports Reporter by the Makhado Municipality. Kaizer was awarded the Mathatha Tsedu award in 2014.