Caps United feel lockdown crunch

HARARE football giants Caps United have, like most clubs, started to feel the impact of the coronavirus-induced lockdown with players reportedly complaining over delayed salaries.

BY TAWANDA TAFIRENYIKA

Caps United are one of the Premier League teams in commercial partnership with mobile telephone company —
NetOne. Dynamos and Highlanders are also sponsored by the telephone giant.

The Green Machine normally pay their players right at the end of each month. However, information obtained
by NewsDay Sport yesterday shows that the players have not been paid their April dues — a situation which is now
worrying them.

“Players are getting worried because their salaries for April have not been paid up to now. What causes them to
worry is that it’s the first time that it has taken this long for them to get their salaries. Considering the economic situation obtaining in the country due to the lockdown necessitated by the coronavirus, they see an uncertain future. They are used to getting their salaries at the end of every month,” an informed source said.

Repeated efforts to contact Caps United co-director Nhamo Tutisani were fruitless yesterday.

City rivals Dynamos have revealed they might be forced to cut salaries of staff and players should the situation
continue in the next few months.

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The Premier Soccer League season was expected to kick off early April but the coronavirus-induced restrictions
have made it impossible and the Zifa leadership has tentatively set August or September as the period for the
league season to commence while waiting to be guided by the government.

The Zifa executive committee at its meeting last week resolved to align the local leagues with those of most African and European countries.

“In its meeting on the 3rd of May 2020, the Zifa emergency committee also noted that other football associations were planning to resume football operations around August/September 2020 and has tentatively set this date as to when our leagues will commence should our government announce the complete end of the lockdown any day before the envisaged dates. The resumption of football activities will also be done in consultation with Caf and Fifa,” part of Zifa’s statement reads. “For Zifa, should the season begin in September such will see us also aligning our football calendar with the rest of the world.”

Zifa stressed that the path to return to normalcy would be guided by the government.

“As is the norm, the path to normalcy shall be derived from the policies implemented by the government of the republic and guidance from Caf and Fifa.

The association in supporting the government decision notes that the only important issue at the moment is the
safety and health of all football stakeholders and the nation as a whole.

“Zifa is confident that football action will return soon to play its part in healing and resuscitating our beautiful nation.”

The delay to the start of the season has already strained the budgets of most clubs as they have poured thousands of dollars into preparations for the season.

The soccer controlling body has applied for a grant to Fifa to minimise the financial impact of the lockdown.

Do you have a coronavirus story? You can email us on: news@alphamedia.co.zw

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