Tshepo Ntsoelengoe
Football Writer
2 minute read
9 Dec 2021
11:04 am

Benni McCarthy on Chiefs Covid saga

Tshepo Ntsoelengoe

'Players are far more important than a football match,' said the AmaZulu coach.

Benni McCarthy, head coach of AmaZulu F.C. Picture: Steve Haag/BackpagePix

AmaZulu FC coach Benni McCarthy has shared his sympathy for Kaizer Chiefs, who have been hit by Covid-19 at Naturena, including players and staff.

READ ALSO: Chiefs doctor explains why Covid-19 hit Amakhosi simply can’t play

Amakhosi made a plea with the Premier Soccer League to have all their December matches postponed due to the pandemic after 31 staff and players tested positive for the virus last week. But it seemed like the association didn’t grant the Glamour Boy’s request after their last two opponents Cape Town City and recently Golden Arrows both honoured their fixtures against Chiefs, but the Soweto giants did not pitch for both games with the PSL failing to make any public announcement.

With new variant hitting the country for about three weeks now, more especially in Gauteng, the Usuthu coach doesn’t see a reason why matches should be canceled if all teams follow the right protocols, but says with Chiefs it’s a different case after the club announced that their cases increased to 36 this week.

“If the protocols are followed with all the team teams, then I don’t see why it’s necessary for the matches to be canceled. There should be a mutual consent because we are professional and every team is trying their best to keep the players fit and healthy and safe from getting any Covid so that every third day we can enjoy some good football,” said the former Bafana Bafana striker after his sides 1-1 draw with Orlando Pirates on Wednesday.

“With Kaizer Chiefs, it is just an unfortunate case where the pandemic spread throughout the whole team. So, I think as rightfully so, you can’t ask them and go put out an MDC team, or not enough players to go out and perform at that level, which is quite unfair. I hope the right thing gets done there. And Kaizer Chiefs don’t get punished for something that is happening in the world. We have to show compassion, because at the end of the day the people’s safety and the players are far more important than a football match.”