SAFA, PSL war after govt decision?


Football fans could witness a potential power struggle after SAFA maintained that a nationwide suspension at all levels should be in effect, despite the PSL receiving its own directive.

The Minister of Sport, Arts and Culture Nathi Mthethwa on Tuesday gave the PSL the all-clear to continue with domestic football under special conditions, following a meeting with all major sports stakeholders in the country.

READ: Government: PSL will finish season

This despite President Cyril Ramaphosa earlier declaring a state of national disaster and prohibiting gatherings of more than 100 people amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

At the meeting, parties concerned raised pertinent questions and suggestions of how they could proceed while practising precaution against the potential spread of the highly contagious virus, the death toll of which has since risen to nearly 8 000 worldwide.

However, SAFA president Danny Jordaan has strongly opposed the minister's directive, insisting that countries such as Italy attempted a similar approach but ultimately succumbed to the virus as players became infected.

READ: Players must continue training – Khoza

"Well, I will be meeting with the chairman [Irvin Khoza] tomorrow [Wednesday]. Our position is that it has been tried before, and Arsenal coach Mikel Arteta tested positive; the whole Real Madrid team are in quarantine," argued Jordaan.

"So, we have to look at issues of health and safety of the players, but also other important issues of contractual obligations and the revenue - these things we have to meet and discuss [ways around it].

"But if you have UEFA, who postponed the Champions League, and they generate $1,5-billion a year; FIFA, of course, at the last World Cup generated $6-billion, and they said we must postpone these matches.

READ: New contract crisis looms for PSL clubs

"So, there is a point where you have to look at how do you mitigate the threat on the commercial and financial side, and how do you secure the health [of stakeholders] and deal with this serious problem."

The League, which is run indepently but falls under the auspices of the national association, will have a board of governors meeting on Thursday to deliberate and determine their own course of action, taking the minister's directive into consideration.

Should the decision be taken to accede to government's proposition by the BOG, there could well be a war waged against them by the custodians of football in the country.

READ: Khoza: PSL can't just cancel season