SAFA to CAF: South African teams will NOT use neutral venues

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The South African Football Association (SAFA) has told CAF that none of its clubs and national teams will use neutral venues for their continental matches.

This comes after the cancellation of CAF Champions League matches involving both Kaizer Chiefs and Mamelodi Sundowns.

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Chiefs were denied visas and entry to Morocco for their clash against Wydad Casablanca, and CAF decided that the match, which has been postponed, to take place in Egypt due to Covid-19 concerns.

On Thursday, Sundowns had to cancel their trip to Algeria because of “further medical restrictions in Algeria” despite being granted visas to face CR Belouizdad.

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SAFA made it clear in a statement that none of the SA teams will honour official continental matches that will be staged outside the opponents countries.

Furthermore, SAFA urged CAF to apply the rules and punish African teams who can’t host South African teams and national teams, saying those clubs and countries must forfeit the matches.

SAFA’S OFFICIAL POSITION

1. Following the resumption of football in the country for both international and domestic activities, we have never had a surge in the number of infections due to the strict health protocols in place that are in line with CAF COVID-19 health protocols.

2. All our clubs/national teams will not use neutral venues, as there is no substantial health reasons to do so.

3. We request that CAF should provide us any breach of their COVID-19 health protocols by both Clubs and National Teams.

4. We request that CAF provide us with any research conducted regarding our COVID-19 situation in South Africa that would warrant alternatives at this stage as all countries have COVID-19 cases with Morocco being second on the continent behind South Africa.

5. Having hosted Sao Tome in an AFCON qualifier and a number of matches in the CAF championships without any health related incidences, we urge CAF to apply rules and regulations where clubs or countries do not want to travel to South Africa or to allow South Africa in their countries. Those clubs and countries must forfeit the matches in line with the CAF Regulations.

SA U17 team, Amjimbos, are also set to travel to Morocco for the Africa Cup of Nations and given the latest developments, chances are that they may not be granted visas.

   

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