No PSL fixture chaos as CAF finally plays ball

Ronnie Schloss
Ronnie Schloss

With CAF having aligned its competitions calendar so that it starts in August and ends in May, the PSL expects a smoother domestic campaign with less backlog of games.

For the first time the PSL and CAF are running a similar programme after the continental body scrapped the March to October schedule.

The group stages of the Champions League and Confederation Cup are set to kick-off next weekend. Mamelodi Sundowns and Wits are representing the country in the competitions this season.

Sundowns will face Angolan club Atletico Petroleos in their Group C opener of the Champions League on November 30 while Wits take on Horoya AC from Guinea in Group B Confed Cup on December 1.

PSL COO Professor Ronnie Schloss hopes this season will not be characterised by rescheduled games. "I hope it will facilitate and help the teams that are playing on a regular basis," Schloss said.

"If we know in advance the dates, it helps us plan our fixtures accordingly. The PSL plans its fixtures a year in advance and we find it difficult when there are changes coming from CAF."

Sundowns, due to their continuous participation in the tournament, have played tight schedules and usually have to play catch-up in the Absa Premiership. The PSL has in the past tried to accommodate the Brazilians by allowing fixtures to be changed.

Schloss said there are factors that need to be taken into account, including the countries local teams travel to.

"There are a number of factors that affect these things. It depends on a few things, including if the teams they [SA clubs] are playing against are around the corner or in the tip of Africa. You have to make travelling considerations and how you get there.

"For instance, there is no direct flight from Johannesburg to Algeria. So do you have to go to Paris first? These are the things we look at."

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