Botswana government’s position to extend lockdown until May 23rd has certainly left football nearing cross-roads.
Therefore, Botswana Football Association’s response to the Confederation of African Football (CAF) letter pivots on the fact that their hands are tied in mapping the way forward as far as the determination of the 2019-2020 league season is concerned.
CAF gave each member state a deadline of May 5 to have shown their clear intentions about their respective leagues. BFA says they are sorry they cannot meet the CAF deadline until certain regulations are uplifted. As the world reels from the coronavirus pandemic, all football activities on the continent have been put on halt and domestic leagues are suspended in an effort to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
In a letter issued to all 54 federations, the continental football governing body said they expect a reply by May 5, in order to plan for continental club competitions next season.
“In view of the current circumstances, we would like to inquire about the current situation of your leagues and national cup, as well as the strategies you intend to apply to finalize those competitions be it through completion or annulment,” said CAF.
The Botswana Premier League (BPL) was suspended indefinitely with a maximum of 10 games to go and the BFA has not decided on whether to complete the season or scrap it. It is understood that BFA intends to complete the league although the return date has not been set and no meeting has taken place between BFA and clubs to discuss football’s fate.
However, the association says they will take any decision to resume football when they deem it ‘necessary’ and based on advice from the relevant public Health Authorities. Football leagues around the world, including the French Ligue 1 and the Dutch Eredivisie have already been cancelled and African leagues now have one week to communicate their plans to CAF.
Athletics is one of the sporting activities that for many years has been consistently performing extremely well in international competitions. One of the reasons is the availability of qualified and experienced coaches, who have been working tirelessly on the ground to ensure that they scout talent and develop more athletes.
For the first time after eons, football clubs plying their trade in the elite league are walking in the shadow of the undefined with nothing concrete agreed and on sight before the commencement of the football season.