Maritzburg United ready to get down to business
Maritzburg United are ready to resume training once they have received the green light from the Premier Soccer League‚ chairman of the club Farook Kadodia has said‚ confirming the KwaZulu-Natal team have done what it can to be compliant in anticipation of that go-ahead.
With the Department of Sports having approved the PSL's plan on Wednesday for a safe return to training at level three of the national lockdown‚ the league's executive committee was meeting on Thursday to discuss the go-ahead‚ which is expected to be communicated to the club shortly.
Most clubs in the Absa Premiership are believed to have reached compliance with the PSL's directive on a return to training in anticipation of the green light.
Kadodia said that United‚ and other PSL sides‚ began to do this based on what teams were doing internationally‚ even before the PSL regulations became known to the clubs.
"We've been reading about the practices done in Europe when they began to train. And clubs made their own initiatives until the PSL gave us the regulations and the protocols‚" Kadodia said in an online press conference arranged by Maritzburg on Thursday.
"And I'm more than confident that we as Maritzburg are ready. We have submitted whatever requirements we had to the league.
"Now it's got to be a decision that has to be taken on behalf of all the clubs to get a confirmed date to train."
Kadodia said the testing and sanitisation does not come cheap.
"Look‚ the whole sanitisation process of the training field‚ the stadium and the change room – all these things come at a cost‚" he said.
"The testing also – you take 40 people for a test and it's nothing less than R35‚000 up to R40‚000.
"And we will have to repeat those testings once we have completed training and we get ready to resume the season.
"Unfortunately the league cannot foot the bill. It's up to us as clubs to foot the bill.
"And the important thing is that to continue football we've got to follow protocol‚ and ensure that all these health responsibilities are taken care of."
Maritzburg were enjoying a highly promising season under coach Eric Tinkler before football was suspended due to the coronavirus on March 16‚ when they were in fifth place in the Premiership‚ chasing their best finish of fourth in 2017-18.
They lost 2-1 to Mamelodi Sundowns in the Telkom Knockout final in December.