Kaizer Chiefs have asked the PSL to postpone a series of their December fixtures after testing produced 31 positive Covid-19 results.
Chiefs have officially requested their matches against Cape Town City, Golden Arrows, Sekhukhune United and Royal AM be postponed after a major coronavirus outbreak at Naturena.
The concerning development in the Chiefs camp comes at a time when South Africa is reported to be entering its fourth wave of the pandemic following the detection of the highly contagious Omicron variant.
In particular, the cases have been surging in Gauteng, which is the epicentre of the rising Covid-19 cases.
“Players and staff at Kaizer Chiefs Football Club have been closely monitored for symptoms during the COVID-19 pandemic and have been tested regularly. More personnel tested positive this week as we were preparing for Saturday’s game.
“As a result of this outbreak that has seen no less 31 people test positive for COVID-19, the Kaizer Chiefs Village is temporarily closed until next week.
“Given the situation, the medical team have conducted contact tracing of primary contacts of those who tested positive and have instructed all players, members of the technical team and staff, including those who tested negative, who are primary contacts to quarantine as per COVID protocols.
“The Club has written to the Premier Soccer League to request for a postponement of the five upcoming games in December against Cape Town City (4 December), Golden Arrows (8 December), Sekhukhune FC (12 December), Royal AM (19 December) and Maritzburg United (22 December) to avoid risk of infection and further spread of the virus and allow those affected to recover and complete their quarantine period before they can play against other teams.
“We view this as a case of force majeure as what the Club is experiencing as a consequence of COVID and the protocols it is obliged to implement, is total beyond the control of the Club. The Club does not at the moment have sufficient players nor technical team to constitute a team. We have appealed to the League to seriously consider the matter for the sake of everyone’s health and safety because there are many other people involved in organising a game.
“The team will be closely monitored by our medical team, while we continue to maintain COVID risk mitigation protocols. We urge supporters to take care of themselves and follow all the COVID protocols. Well wishes and speedy recovery to all those affected,” the statement concluded.
CHIEFS HAVE BEEN IN FINE FORM
The dramatic news is a terrible blow for Chiefs, who have surged up to second place on the DSTV Premiership standings recently.
Since defeating Orlando Pirates on 6 November, Chiefs have beaten Maritzburg United, drawn with AmaZulu and most recently defeated Swallows 3-1.