PSL, Safa to butt heads over mooted African Super League
Fixture congestion is already a nightmare for PSL
The PSL and Safa are on a collision course over the mooted African Super League competition and Sunday World can reveal that the PSL is not entertaining this competition.
The tournament is the brainchild of Fifa president Gianni Infantino and his CAF counterpart Patrice Motsepe, and Safa voted in favour of the Super League at the last CAF congress.
Various deep throats within the league have revealed that the league is not buying into the idea simply because of sponsors obligations, running contracts in their TV broadcast deals and the fixture congestion, which continues to be a nightmare for the PSL.
At the recently concluded Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) tournament in Cameroon, plans to get the ball rolling for the African Super League were discussed and took a step forward, with Fifa likely to play a major role in organising of the event.
African giants such as Al Ahly and Kaizer Chiefs were invited to Cameroon for a symposium. Chiefs were represented by marketing manager Jessica Motaung.
“We want the African Super League to be world class and to compete against the best in the world in terms of quality of football, resources, infrastructure, pitches, referees, stadiums and ticketing. A lot of good progress has been made,” Motsepe was quoted at the time.
“Where and when can this competition be squeezed in when the fixture schedule is so demanding?” asked one highly placed informant. “There are cup competitions like MTN8, the Nedbank Cup and Telkom is also likely to make a comeback in a different form. There simply is no space to bring another headache into the already tight programme.
“CAF and Fifa have not even communicated with the clubs as to how it will work, so everything is just up in the air,” he added.
Said another source: “The PSL has guaranteed its sponsors, the Dstv Premiership,
MTN8, that there will be no other competitions played except for CAF tournaments. The sentiment is that the reason why the league does not have 18 or 20 teams is because of the congested fixture schedule. So, it will be something that is bought begrudgingly and it will not be a happy sell. The other thing is that if it’s not a happy sell, it is happening at a time when clubs are also forced to go with the creation of women’s teams and these are going to run parallel.”
Approached for a comment, PSL acting CEO Mato Madlala said she did not know anything about the Super League and therefore could not comment.
Safa CEO Tebogo Motlanthe said: “What we have received from CAF is that the Super League will be established but we do not have particulars as to what would be the model, how is it going to be run, who are going to be the clubs and what’s going to be the criteria.
“We are waiting for more information from CAF and as soon as we receive that information, we will then state our position,” he said.
“We support the competition and we voted for it because it may open up opportunities, but we are just waiting for finer details so that we can start engaging the clubs.”
Outspoken Al Ahly coach Pitso Mosimane also has his questions and reservations about the competition.
“You ask yourself what’s going to happen with the CAF Super League. I mean, I’m so much interested, I would love to know, I need somebody to explain to me the Super League, maybe you guys know and send me something that the Super League is about,” Mosimane told journalists of the South African Football Journalist Association recently.