The Premier Soccer League (PSL) has set stringent conditions for friendly matches ahead of the return of football in a week’s time.
Clubs will have to pay US$590 (close to $50 000) per match and also pay for the match officials’ COVID-19 tests, which have to be done 24 hours before kick-off.
A memorandum (standard operating procedures) sent to the clubs on Thursday and signed by PSL chief executive Kennedy Ndebele reads:
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Matches (friendly) shall be handled by match officials appointed by the Zifa Referees Committee.
The match fees are as follows: match commissioner US$120/equivalent; centre referee US$120/equivalent; assistant referees US$100/equivalent; a member of the PSL sports medicine committee shall be present at all friendly matches. The doctor fee for attendance is US$150.
… This serves to advise PSL clubs are required to follow the laid down protocols when having friendly matches.
Requests for friendly matches are to be submitted to the PSL offices on Tuesdays only to allow us sufficient time to process the applications.
All players, technical team, and match officials are to be tested for COVID-19 24 hours before the match.
The tests must be monitored by the COVID-19 PSL compliance officers. Clubs shall be responsible for COVID-19 testing of the match officials. Matches are to be played behind closed doors
The league resumes on 15 May with a cluster tournament to be played in Harare (CAPS United, Dynamos, Harare City, Herentals, Yadah, and ZPC Kariba), Bulawayo (Bulawayo Chiefs, Bulawayo City, Chicken Inn and Highlanders), Zvishavane (FC Platinum, Ngezi Platinum Stars, Triangle, and Whawha) and in Mutare (Manica Diamonds, Tenax, Black Rhinos, and Cranborne Bullets).
Two top teams in the groups will clash in the quarter-finals. The main league is set to start on 17 July.