Khoza hints at fewer PSL games

2010-12-24 00:00

JOHANNESBURG — Premier Soccer League chairperson Irvin Khoza has made the strongest ever hint that the continent’s most commercially successful league might consider cutting down on the number of domestic cup competitions in an effort to give clubs more time to concentrate on Pan-African club competitions.

Khoza hinted that the PSL board of governors, the highest decision making body of professional football in the country, will hold a workshop next year and among issues to be discussed and debated could be the possibility of reducing the number of cup competitions.

Currently the PSL runs the MTN8 Cup competition, the Telkom Cup which is contested exclusively by the 16 teams of the Premiership and the Nedbank Challenge Cup of which the winner represent the country in the CAF Confederation Cup.

“In order to maintain our status as the continent’s number one commercially successful league,” said Khoza, “perhaps the time has come for us to seriously consider cutting down on the number of our domestic cup competitions. I cannot pinpoint which one exactly, but I think that will have to be discussed at a planned workshop next year.”

The top 12 teams according to the CAF ratings are allowed the luxury of entering two teams each in the African Champions League and CAF Confederation Cup respectively. But local clubs have either refused to enter and cited flimsy excuses or if they did, embarrassingly bombed out in the first round without making any significant impact.

“When I look at TP Mazembe and what they have achieved in the FIFA World Club championship this year when losing to Inter Milan in the final, I felt proud to be an African,” said Khoza. “But more importantly, clubs across the continent need to look at Mazembe and be inspired. “It is the duty of all the clubs across the continent to take over the baton from Mazembe and whoever qualifies for the FIFA World Club competition must strive to emulate if not go one better than Mazembe.

And it is only if we take Pan-African club competitions seriously that we can aim to scale similar heights.”

It is a well-known fact that should the plan to reduce the number of cup competitions succeed the first person who will rejoice would be national coach Pitso Mosimane, who has also been hamstrung by the unavailability of players due to a congested domestic programme.

 

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