Kaizer Chiefs and Mamelodi Sundowns have finally been provided with the dates, times and venues for their postponed Caf Champions League encounters with Morocco’s Wydad Casablanca and Algeria’s CR Belouizdad, respectively.
Chiefs were meant to travel to Morocco last week to take on Wydad, but were denied entry into the country due to ‘medical’ restrictions around the coronavirus.
The Soweto giants were then given the runaround for several days as the Moroccans insisted that the game be played at a neutral venue, with Egypt the designated choice. That plan, though, also fell through as Chiefs could not get visas in time to make the match. It was called off again.
Then a new date in Egypt was sought, but this also fell apart when it clashed with the staging of another game.
Sundowns, on the other hand, had to cancel their trip for their Group B game against CR Belouizdad on Thursday last week‚ as the club was leaving for OR Tambo International Airport.
Despite initially granted visas by the Algerian authorities, the Brazilians were informed on Thursday that the situation had changed due to ‘further medical restrictions’.
Both sides only seemingly were forced into action when Safa called on Caf to take control of the chaotic situation‚ and the governing body warned both teams to find alternative venues by Monday at midnight or face 2-0 walkovers.
South African Football Association (Safa) CEO Tebogo Motlanthe told TimesLIVE on Monday that he had letters from the Confederation of African Football (Caf) confirming that the two games will be played on Sunday.
‘I can confirm that we have received letters that say Chiefs will play in Burkina Faso and Sundowns will play in Tanzania on the 28th [of February]‚’ he said.
‘But the association will further consult with the two teams and check if they will be able to meet the logistics and all that‚’ he said.
‘Remember‚ initially Chiefs were the ones who suggested February 28‚ so I do not expect them to have too much trouble with the new date.
‘With Sundowns I do not know, because it will also have an impact on the domestic league.
‘And Caf needs to understand that it is not as if you are moving to Polokwane and then not playing.’
The Brazilians are set to play Polokwane City in a Nedbank Cup clash this coming weekend and, should they progress, a postponement may be needed. Chiefs, though, face no such problems as they were knocked out of the tournament by lower-tier side Richards Bay.
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