If comments coming out of the South African Football Players Union (Safpu) are to be believed, there are many players across the Absa Premership earning barely enough to get by, a disgrace for a league rich in sponsorship but poor, it appears, in its protection of its key assets, the players.
Safpu are calling for a minimum wage and in the meantime, a player strike, and it may be that this is the only immediate solution, to wake the governing body up to the problem. Chiefs’s Bobby Motaung refused to comment on the matter of Bvuma’s contract, but if it is true, then a club as rich as Chiefs are acting in a disgraceful manner, paying a player such a paltry amount to play professional football. Something needs to be done to regulate the situation, and fast.
The Premier Soccer League cannot claim to be doing their job without at least conducting a serious investigation of any allegation that player is being paid so badly. But given their history, it is unlikely they will do anything at all. After all, this is a PSL that has still not reached a decision on the violence at Loftus at this season’s Absa Premiership match between Orlando Pirates and Sundowns, in a game where the appalling violence of supporters was there for all to see.
One man who will not need to worry about a decent salary, meanwhile, is almost certainly Steven Pienaar, who appears to have his pick of Absa Premiership clubs to play for next season, if, as seems likely, he chooses to return to the PSL. In an interview on Page 9, Pienaar speaks out about his move back to South Africa, and about his Community Tournament, which gives back to the Westbury neighbourhood in which he grew up.
Elsewhere in this week’s Phakaaathi, we look ahead to the Nedbank Cup final, which is a little late in coming, but which ends the PSL season once and for all on Saturday.
It is a repeat of the 2016 final, where Stuart Baxter’s SuperSport United beat Eric Tinkler’s Orlando Pirates.
Now Tinkler is in charge of SuperSport, but only from July 1, so this will be Baxter’s last game in charge of Matsatsantsa.
I think the current Bafana Bafana head coach will leave SuperSport with a bang, beating Kjell Jonevret’s Pirates in the final.
The Buccaneers will be desperate for silverware after their poor performance in the league this season, but I don’t think the long lay-off will do the Buccaneers any good, with SuperSport primed from their participation in the Caf Confederation Cup group stages.
On Page 8, we also take a look at both club’s journey to the showpiece in Durban. We also have the latest on SuperSport’s participation in the Confederation Cup, and on Sundowns in the Champions League, with Pitso Mosimane’s side badly needing a positive result in Tunis, after a stuttering group stage campaign so far.
It would be hard to blame Sundowns if they lost, however, with the gruelling schedule they have had to endure in the last couple of years. It may even help them regain the Premiership title if they get knockout out of this year’s Champions League.
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