… but COVID-19 is playing havoc with planners
The COVID-19 pandemic- could present Botswana’s football leagues (main league and lower divisions) with a fixture congestion problem if the season resumes in the next month or so. If this happened, clubs would find themselves having to play every three days in order to complete the league season and the Orange FA Cup.
However, fixture congestion is the least of their problems because the scheduling of the 2020/21 season could present a completely new dilemma for the decision makers for the reason that its start would find the State of Emergency still in force.
With large gatherings proscribed under the SoE, football games would likely be played behind closed doors for the foreseeable future. A highly placed source has informed Gazette Sport that the decision makers are considering numerous scheduling options for the 2020/2021 season with a January to December format being discussed as a possible option.
Such a format would accommodate the Mascom Top 8, the BTC Premiership and the Orange FA Cup within the same calendar year. But because the Top 8 usually starts in November, its normal scheduling could be affected by a possible late start of the next season.
League seasons normally run from August to May, but the COVID-19 pandemic has affected football in such a way that the start of the next season will be pushed further because the ending of the 2019/20 season is likely to stretch for a longer time.
Reached for comment, the Secretary General of the Botswana Football Association, Mfolo Mfolo, said they will have to take the government’s Coronavirus measures into consideration when they plan for resumption of football activities.