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Football could collapse if PSL doesn’t start soon, says Comitis

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Cape Town City chairman John Comitis is anticipating the collapse of football in South Africa if the local season doesn’t resume soon.

Cape Town City chairman John Comitis. File Picture

DURBAN – Cape Town City chairman John Comitis is anticipating the collapse of football in South Africa if the local season doesn’t resume soon.

Comitis is worried about the state of football because of the delay with the resumption of the Premier Soccer League (PSL), which has been on hold since mid-March due to the coronavirus pandemic.

In an interview with IOL Sport, Comitis revealed why he felt that the lengthy wait could collapse the industry.

“If we don’t resume, there’s going to be problems. Sponsors are going to start asking questions – like our own sponsors are asking questions,” Comitis said.

“I don’t know where we will be without DirectAxis, who have stuck with us regardless. We are hoping that we will return to football, because we are going to suffer (if we don’t),” Comitis elaborated.

“The disaster that looms means that people are going to lose their jobs and the industry will collapse,” he added.

The PSL was prepared to reboot the local season this past weekend, but Safa deemed that the match officials were not fit to officiate the games.

According to the scientific research that was conducted by the Referees’ Technical Committee, match officials will be ready in two weeks – hence the South African Football Association suggesting the first week of August as an appropriate date for a return to action.

“We’ve been training via zoom and until we were given permission to get back to training. We’ve been training for the past three months. The players are getting frustrated.

“The entire industry is getting frustrated. It is not nice. The coaches are getting fired. We are aimlessly training for nothing,” Comitis added.

It remains to be seen as to when the local season will resume, if it does. The league might be forced to call it off if the delay continues.

But cancelling the rest of the season will have huge consequences. Crowning the champions can be easy, but deciding on relegation and promotion can prove difficult.

“We are hopeful that sanity will prevail and (we will) return to business, like other businesses that have been allowed to return. We are just waiting to see what will develop. We will find out what is going on maybe Monday or Tuesday,” Comitis said.

If the local season does resume, the league will be finished behind closed doors in a bio-bubble environment in Gauteng.

“We’ve been told to get ready. We need to wait for PSL and Safa to finalise what is going to happen,” Comitis stated.