FILE - SAFA president Danny Jordaan. Photo:Andre Durao/Action Images
FILE - SAFA president Danny Jordaan. Photo:Andre Durao/Action Images

Safa working with English FA to find Covid-19 solutions for football

By Herman Gibbs Time of article published May 26, 2020

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CAPE TOWN – South African football continues to reap the benefits of its longstanding relationship with the English Football Association, who have offered insight into various issues of interest in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Safa president Danny Jordaan said he was not surprised to hear from his English FA counterpart Greg Clarke who is also a Fifa vice-president.

“The relationship between Safa and the FA stretches over many years, and there have been so many times when we’ve supported each other. Clarke and I often meet up at Fifa conferences and chat about matters of mutual interest,” Jordaan said.

The contents of Clarke’s letter could help SA football shed light on how it moves ahead while dealing with Covid-19.

On the world stage Clarke has been the go-to man to expound on Covid-19 measures needed to resume football.

In Europe, he was the first to suggest that leagues be played behind closed doors.

Clarke said he felt there was a need for cooperation between the two camps (South Africa and England) during these difficult times.

“We (English FA) have been thinking about how we keep our international football friendships and conversations alive,” Clarke wrote in the letter.

The Joint Liaison Committee (JLC) are presently plotting the way forward to resuming the game in SA.

“Safa welcomes the opportunity for engagement and will participate in discussions with the English FA whose experience will be invaluable in our attempt to find solutions to South African challenges,” Jordaan said.

“These cooperation agreements with our global partners cover areas like the technical cooperation, competitions, youth football, women’s football, education, international matches and many other areas.

“This cooperation is placed in the context of Covid-19 and working together to find the best solutions for the return-to-play strategy and the commercial challenges.

“We have set up a group to engage with the FA on these matters within the spirit of friendship and solidarity.”

Meanwhile, there is no date set for the resumption of football in SA, but England’s Premier League clubs are looking at a June 19 or 26 restart.

@herman_gibbs

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