The Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) has confirmed that the 2019/2020 Zambia Super League will come to an end on Sunday, August 9th after Forest Rangers play their game with Zanaco.
The league was originally scheduled to end on Thursday, August 6th but after the Appeals Committee overturned the Disciplinary Committee ruling to award Zanaco three points from their unplayed game with Forest Rangers and ordered that the match be played, FAZ was forced to move the end of the season to Sunday and crowning of a new Champion.
The 2019/2020 Super League will be concluded on Sunday (09/08/2020) when the match between Forest Rangers and Zanaco will be played at Levy Mwanawasa Stadium. Promotions and demotions will take place based on the final league standings as at Week 27.
FAZ General Secretary Adrian Kashala addressed the media this afternoon to clear the air and explain the issues surrounding the premature end of the season.
“In our guidelines, we clearly indicated that if the situation improves we would continue with the games but if the situation worsens we would not continue, and at some point, we would call off the league, I think that was very clear,” Kashala said.
“We also ordered clubs to ensure that they do COVID-19 tests before starting training but because we have a tendency of not reading ( for lack of a better term) or failing to respect guidelines and taking things seriously we saw clubs going to the pitch without doing tests but of course we emphasized that no games would be played without COVID-19 test results,” he added.
Kashala also went on to reveal that the Association was directed by the Ministry of health to end the league shortly after resumption owing to the sharp increase in Coronavirus cases. He went on to reveal that the season was actually supposed to be stopped at week 25 but FAZ asked for two more weeks.
“The Executive Committee on advice from the Ministry of Health sat and resolved that league ends as at week 27. It was not something that FAZ decided because we did not want the game to continue but it was because we got directives that the game comes to an end,” he said.
“We were having challenges to accesses results, The testing kits are in short supply and we did not want to risk using the players who are not tested because of any fatality the song would have changed from FAZ to an individual.”
“In fact, the league should have been stopped as at week 25 but because the notice was too short we asked the Authorities to give us two more games to help clubs do their planning and allow us to communicate to our affiliates,” he added.
FAZ will on Tuesday meet the Super League clubs to discuss the issues surrounding the league.
“For us, in the interest of togetherness and democracy we intend to call for a meeting for the Super League to discuss a number issues surrounding the 2019/ 2020 soccer season and we also want to apologize and take responsibility for the decision that was made. We are not apologizing because it was a wrong decision but because of the timing and the inconvenience this may have caused to other stakeholders,” Kashala said.
Zanaco and Forest Rangers will go head to head on Sunday, August 9th at Levy Mwanawasa Stadium to decide who will be crowned Champions of the 2019/2020 MTN/FAZ Super League.