Football is back in play after a 5-month hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic in South Africa, the most affected country on the African continent.
All 57 cup and league matches will be staged in Gauteng, the hardest-hit province in the country by COVID-19, which has claimed 9,298 lives nationally and is the highest death toll in Africa.
Drastic health restrictions will be imposed on the various ABSA Premiership teams as the Minister of Sports pointed out how neighbouring Zambia stopped championships due to a spike in cases.
As is the global standard, stadiums will remain empty during matches – which is bizarre for the SA “vuvuzela” culture, where there is a dynamic exchange between fans and players.
Which begs the question as to whether their absence will have a significant negative impact on the games. To be discovered this Saturday with the semi-finals of the FA Cup in Soweto.
Two-time champions, Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates will face off on Tuesday in the League in Soweto as they both hope to beat Kaizer Chiefs, who are currently in the lead with less than eight days left to play.