Since the abrupt interruption of all sporting activities across the world due to the Coronavirus outbreak and according to the Johns Hopkins University, over 4 million people have been infected and approximately 300 000 deaths worldwide, while causing disruptions and sadness in communities without prejudice.
High performance sports organizations irrespective of their magnitude and history, have suffered huge economic losses amounting to trillions of rands from sponsors, broadcasters and gate-taking revenue.
Like the Spanish flu in the early 1918s, that ravaged the world, this Covid-19 epidemic will certainly fall.
But as Clubs in the PSL count their losses and make plans when to finish the 2019/20 season, what are the key lessons that the PSL clubs can derive from this epidemic?
The FARPost Technical Study Group (TSG) will look at feasible lessons in the Post Covid-19 PSL
1. Players contracts
Various clubs have been hit differently by this epidemic, causing few of them to suggest players and supporting staff salary cuts. This move has angered players and sports unions, leading to unnecessary media battles and all-round discomfort amongst all involved. A move to restructure players’ contracts and accommodate unforeseen circumstances might be a solution.
2. Gym equipment
During this virus outbreak, Clubs asked players to continue their individual training at home. Zoom became the obvious choice to provide virtual interaction between the players and their technical teams. From the virtual images doing the rounds on the online media platforms, it is clear that our players have no gym equipment at home.
Perhaps a move to provide players with gym equipment (as part of signing on fee or deducted from their monthly salaries)
3. Technical Team IT upgrade
Only a few clubs in the PSL are equipped enough to utilize virtual training. Few clubs in the GladAfrica Championship have opted to enter the virtual space, where are the rest of the clubs?
Clubs need to embrace the 4th Industrial Revolution better.
4. Continuous testing
This epidemic has highlighted the need for clubs to have a continuous and sustainable testing parameters, from the minute players and supporting staff, enters and leaves their premises.
Regular field and environmental sanitization (training fields, canteen, stadium and playing fields).
5. Stop players spitting
Players spitting tendencies must be discouraged, and instead of issuing a red or fines for players disobeying the rule, players supporting measures must be put in place to help players understand the medical reasons behind.
6. Social contact App
A social contact app is currently in use in the United States to assist and track people contact patterns. Such an app when used diligently could provide the club and the medical team valuable information in terms of social contact of players and broader community.
Covid-19 has changed the world perception on various factors from economy to health, and for the PSL teams, the following factors must be improved:
– Better communication between players, clubs and players unions all the time
– Risk management and due diligence
– Upgrade of medical and health parameters
– Intensive Insurance Program
– Players Educational Program
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By FARPost Technical Study Group