While the COVID-19 pandemic has wrought havoc on the sporting world, it has created the opportunity to reassess the business models of clubs and leagues, and find a new way forward.
The financial devastation of the pause in football has been keenly felt all over, but it has created conversations about what can be improved in the various countries.
Mozambique’s MocamBola is one of those leagues that is assessing their own future, and whether it is best to switch their calendar from the traditional April-December season to an August-May fixture list.
This has become more prevalent in Africa as leagues seek to align with the European calendar, which makes the transfer of players easier and aligns club competitions with the international windows created by FIFA.
A number of countries in the COSAFA region follow this calendar, including South Africa, Angola, Zambia and Botswana.
The fact that the MocamBola have been unable to get their season under way in its usual April slot has perhaps created the opportunity to make the most to an August-May season, and it has won support from national team coach Luís Gonçalves.
“I can only see positive aspects with the change of the season. It will allow players who play outside the country and inside to be competing at the same time and on the same level in competitive terms,” he said.
The matter is still to be discussed by league officials and the leadership of the Mozambique Football Federation.
Other leagues around the COSAFA region are still make tentative plans to return to play, with the hope being that in the next few months we will see most back in action
Supporters in all COSAFA nations are urged to follow the advice of the World Health Organisation (WHO) to combat the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, which include:
Wash your hands frequently: Regularly and thoroughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water.
Maintain social distancing: Maintain at least 1 metre (3 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth: Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and can make you sick.
Practice respiratory hygiene: Make sure you, and the people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene. This means covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately
If you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical care early: Stay home if you feel unwell. If you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical attention and call in advance. Follow the directions of your local health authority.