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PSL still a month away from pressing panic button


‘For now, we should all focus on the challenge day by day,’ says SuperSport United chief executive

DURBAN – SuperSport United chief executive Stanley Matthews can see the light at the end of the tunnel despite the world going through torrid times because of the impact of the coronavirus.

Players abroad are facing salary cuts and on-field action has been halted across the globe. But Matthews, who is also a member of the Premier Soccer League (PSL) executive committee, believes it is no time to panic and is not thinking about salary cuts in the South African league.

“We can’t make those type of predictions right now because we are engaging our stakeholders daily and we’ve got a fantastic relationship with them,” Matthews explained.

“We would like to think that we will get through this messy situation together; we believe that we will make ground for the lost time in terms of completing the fixtures so that everybody gets what they were going to get. At this stage we can’t predict what the rest of the economy will be like. This has impacted on the economy. If it has further knocks on the corporate world, we expect the same with some clubs,” he added.

The members of the PSL board of governors wants the league finished on the field of play and Matthews remains optimistic that this is still possible.

“We don’t want to sound as if it’s all doom and gloom in the middle of this period. Currently we are one round of fixtures behind. That’s the reality of the situation. We still have a good 10 weeks before the end of June and we only have eight rounds of matches and it is six for most teams. We still have few weeks before we start worrying. We are still a month away from pressing the panic button. For now we should all focus on the challenge day by day. We are trying to do that as a club from a social perspective, physical perspective, emotional perspective and from a tactical perspective.”

Meanwhile, the administrator has been channeling his players and tactical team to use the downtime fruitfully.

“Our players are going through a lot of video footage. Our coach is working hard. This has given us an opportunity to phone an odd person that we haven’t spoken to in a while because we are always on the run. This is time for introspection. There’s a lot of positives we can take out of this as a club, industry and individually. We get stronger out of this. We have to be more innovative on an online space. Nothing beats faith. We are tracking the global leagues and we see what they are doing.”

SuperSport were front-runners for league honours but inconsistency broke their rhythm. The best they can hope for is a spot in the top three, unless log leaders Kaizer Chiefs and Mamelodi Sundowns falter.