- Amakhosi has been forced into making changes ahead of a match last weekend because of positive Covid-19 infections
- Enjoying their best run of form in over a year, the team might now have to miss a crucial run of fixtures
- The country is in the middle of the predicted fourth wave of infections, amidst which the club has temporarily shut down its home base
A Covid outbreak among Kaizer Chiefs personnel has prompted the club to seek postponement of five upcoming fixtures from the Premier Soccer League (PSL).
In a statement posted on the club’s website, they said that stricter Covid management protocols have been implemented after 31 people tested positive. There was no indication if this is the Omicron variant or not, but the club was forced to temporarily shut down Kaizer Chiefs Village in Naturena, Johannesburg, until some point next week.
It had emerged ahead of the Phefeni Glamour Boys’ DSTV Premiership clash against Moroka Swallows last weekend that the team had to make lineup changes due to positive Covid cases among players. Kaizer Chiefs went on to win the match 3-1.
In a statement, Chiefs management announced:
“The Club has written to the Premier Soccer League to request a postponement of the five upcoming games in December against Cape Town City (4 December), Golden Arrows (8 December), Sekhukhune FC (12 December), Royal AM (19 December) and Maritzburg United (22 December) to avoid risk of infection and further spread of the virus and allow those affected to recover and complete their quarantine period before they can play against other teams,” the statement read.
“The Club does not at the moment have sufficient players nor technical team to constitute a team. We have appealed to the League to seriously consider the matter for the sake of everyone’s health and safety because there are many other people involved in organising a game.”
The PSL has yet to give its response to a request for comment.
Chiefs encouraged football fans to follow Covid protocols and sent well wishes to those who were affected.
The matter was a divisive one on social media.
"I once said Chiefs must buy more players because they will get affected by Covid, look what's happening now. You should have listened to our suggestions."
"In this situation, even if we had 100 players, it was not going to help, all the players need to go to quarantine because they trained together with those affected and they meet with the staff who are affected."
@BetweenYouI was unsympathetic:
"OfficialPSL must reject, this is not Kaizer Premier League. Those who did not test positive for Covid19 must go play."
"Speedy recovery to everyone who is infected. Broken hearted! So the whole of December without seeing my faves."
South Africa is currently experiencing a resurgence in Covid-19 infections a result of the predicted fourth wave, which was set to hit in the month of December. According to the government’s Covid response website, this wave of infections is expected to recede by the end of January 2022.
Benni McCarthy was "in the vaccine area," encouraged others to do the same
Briefly News reported on Amazulu coach and legendary former player Benni McCarthy receiving his Covid-19 vaccine dose. Vaccination remains a highly controversial matter, but McCarthy encouraged South Africans to put their safety first.
"1st vaccine done at the Moses Mabhida Vaccination site #staystafe #getyourvaccination," read a caption on his Instagram post.
His message was met with a positive response on his account.
"Well done, my coach!"
"You are exemplary coach, let the rest of South Africa follow."
"Leaders don't talk much instead they act and influence their followers. Thanks for what you are doing Benni."
"Got mine coach. We have to be strong and block the noise from the naysayers.