Portraits of spectators have been put in the stands of German Bundesliga soccer club Borussia Moenchengladbach. The Bundesliga's plans to re-start in May are meeting increased opposition, with a German virologist warning that players' safety is at stake. Picture: Martin Meissner/AP
Portraits of spectators have been put in the stands of German Bundesliga soccer club Borussia Moenchengladbach. The Bundesliga's plans to re-start in May are meeting increased opposition, with a German virologist warning that players' safety is at stake. Picture: Martin Meissner/AP

OPINION: PSL must not emulate Bundesliga and gamble with players' lives

By Minenhle Mkhize Time of article published Apr 28, 2020

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LIFE without football is miserable.

It’s been a month without the beautiful game but it feels like it's been a year. That’s the power of football for you – it is the magic that lights up the dreary existence across the globe.

Right now, we are hovering in no man’s land. All sporting activities have been brought to a halt since mid-March by the coronavirus outbreak which has ravaged the world.

The turbulent times brought on by the pandemic have resulted in salary cuts for some of the players. That is not nice but at the same time it doesn’t mean we must gamble with their lives.

That is exactly what is happening in Germany. They are planning on gambling with players’ lives.

I comprehend that in order for football clubs to generate revenue they need to be playing. But we don’t want to witness a situation where players’ lives are compromised at the expense of generating income.

That is nonsense.

The Bundesliga must stop it. For now, it is not safe to play football, so I don’t understand when they state they intend to resume Bundesliga action as soon as May.

The fact that the German government has halted all sporting activities is a clear indication it is still not safe to resume footballing action.

Why force things? Because you want to generate income? What about players’ lives?

Is it going to be nice when we lose our superstars because all we cared about was generating revenue? How are they going to perform at their best with face masks?

Yes, they will conduct tests on a regular basis but sometimes this disease can been identified after a number of days.

What if that is the case in some of these players who will be in action? We all want the action to resume but not in this manner.

There’s no denying that Germany is among the countries that has recorded the lowest number of Covid-19 cases, but it is not like people are not dying in Germany.

I sense desperation by the Bundesliga.

I want to commend Dutch football for being decisive in their actions.

They didn’t want to force things. Their season was deemed null and void. No teams were relegated and no team was crowned champions. They didn’t gamble with players’ lives like they are intending to do in Germany.

Yes, it is cruel for Ajax Amsterdam and AZ Alkmaar, who were neck and neck at the summit of the Eredivisie table. The clubs were tied on 54 points with nine games to go.

The Dutch authorities took the safest measure. They prioritised their players’ lives at the expense of generating income.

That was admirable but at the same time wise under these circumstances.

I’m optimistic our local Premier Soccer League won’t be inspired by the Bundesliga. The board of governors’ meeting is on Thursday and a lot is going to come out of that meeting.

@Minenhlecr7

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