CHINHOYI: With the current concerted push to get the soccer season started in the country, former Zimbabwe football association (ZIFA) President and Makonde Member of Parliament Leo Mugabe who retired from both sports and politics recently said the most important thing is to get soccer players tested first before anything starts.

Mugabe said testing was important as in the worst scenario a spike could be seen in both infections and deaths in the next month due to multiplier effect.

“Players should get tested first before anything else as statistics don’t lie”, said Mugabe to this publication at a local service station.

Covid 19 infections surpassed 7 000 mark and is now at 7576 as of last Tuesday. The current covid 19 in the country will make it difficult for soccer to resume in the country.

” some authorities are reportedly pushing for the game to resume, in this time of the pandemic we should accept the reality that the current conditions don’t allow for the return of soccer.

“There is a lot that should be considered, for team to stay in controlled environment and regular covid 19 tests are conducted. No one is allowed into the bio- bubble without being tested and even match officials should also stay in the controlled environment, ” said Mugabe.

A soccer lover Moses jaji in an interview said that strict measures should be adhered to especially during training and match days.

“Training and match day facilities should be disinfected regularly and during games on half time. Players should also change kits at half time.

“Other leagues in Europe managed to continue with their programmes because their well resourced and enjoy corporate sponsorship that cushion clubs.”

Speaking in the personal capacity the Chinhoyi Rangers FC Chairperson Phibion Data posed a number of questions concerning the feasibility of starting the soccer league.

“Please note that these are my views don’t reflect Chinhoyi Rangers FC position, how do clubs deal with losses incurred from playing in empty stadium, but still carrying costs for service providers.

How do clubs deal with the requirements for testing and provision protocols from training to match day when some are already failing to cushion their players, or even maintaining club houses? He asked.

The domestic football league has not started when covid 19 struck in March, with the only official 2020 topflight match having played being the castle challenge match between FC platinum and Highlanders at barbourfields stadium.

When President Mnangagwa announced the suspension of sporting activities in March, there was hope that covid 19 would be contained in few weeks and society would get used to the new normal way of living while abiding by the health protocols to curb the spread of coronavirus.

Associated press reported that more than 50 players and staff members at football clubs in Zambia tested positive for covid 19 in an outbreak that national association said was caused by teams failing to properly implement measures to stop its spread, resulting in the season being cut short just 2 weeks after it had restarted.

-Telegraph/ Newziana