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Premier Soccer League: All set for the big kick-off

Premier football is set to return after a two-year COVID-19-induced hiatus and clubs are already putting final touches to the preparations.

BY FORTUNE MBELE THE Premier Soccer League (PSL) is finalising preparations for the big kick-off, which is expected to come a week after the Chibuku Super Cup quarter-finals next weekend.

Premier football is set to return after a two-year COVID-19-induced hiatus and clubs are already putting final touches to the preparations.

Clubs used the Chibuku Super Cup as a preparations for the resumption of the league and after this weekend’s final round of group matches, the quarter-finals take place next week after which the real deal begins.

The top-flight teams were given until yesterday to submit their Zifa club licensing forms, with fixtures expected to be released soon after.

In correspondence sent to the 18 clubs on Thursday, PSL chief executive Kennedy Ndebele demanded that the Zifa club licences be submitted to the league offices by 5pm yesterday.

“We enclose hereby the Zifa form for your completion. Please let us have the completed form by 1700hrs Friday October 22, 2021. Kindly not that this form is required to be submitted before the release of the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League Championship 2021/2022 fixtures,” Ndebele said.

The PSL on Thursday also issued a Press statement announcing the dates for the Chibuku Super Cup and the push back on the league kick start.

The league had been set to start on October 30, but that has since been changed to a week later.

“This serves to advise that we are concluding the first round of the Chibuku Super Cup matches this weekend with Group 1 match day 10 fixtures. The quarter-finals will be played on October 30/31 at a venue to be announced. The start of the Castle Lager Premiership will be announced in due course after consultations with our stakeholders,” PSL spokesperson Kudzai Bare said.

The three remaining Chibuku Super Cup Group 1 matches will be played between today and tomorrow, with Yadah taking on Herentals at the National Sports Stadium.

Both have failed qualified for the quarter-final and their tie is a dead rubber.

Dynamos, who have qualified to the next stage of the tournament where they face Black Rhinos in the quarter-finals, clash with Harare City at Baobab Stadium tomorrow.

In another match, Caps United clash with ZPC Kariba at the National Sports Stadium, with the latter looking to pip Harare City to the remaining quarter-final slot.

Meanwhile, with 2 000 fans now permitted to attend each match, patron for the Dynamos’ Supporters Chapters for Matabeleland, Sunungurai Bhiza, has implored authorities to consider increasing the figure.

“For a start after this long, this is a good beginning. However, we feel the numbers are too little. They (Sports and Recreation Commission) should have taken a leaf from the Europe leagues, 2 000 for big clubs like Dynamos and Highlanders is too little,” he said.

“We have, however, been encouraging our members to get vaccinated and quite a number have received the jab. We will have meetings with our members to tell them we don’t want chaos. If 2 000 go in, the rest should wait for another day. If there is chaos, SRC will revise their position and we won’t be able to watch football.”

Follow Fortune on Twitter: @fmbele