COVID-19 cancels the TRNC 2020-21 Football Season
By Richard Beale…
After a meeting held at Lefkoşa Ahmed Sami Topcan Conference Salon on Monday evening between the Cyprus Turkish Football Federation and representatives from 30 football clubs, it was decided that the delayed 2020-21 season should be cancelled.
I understand that this action was taken after discussions and guidance with the Contagious Diseases Executive Committee
The 2020-21 K-Pet football season involving clubs from the Super League and League 1 was due to start in mid September and finish at the beginning of May.
Turkish Cypriot Football President Mr Hasan Sertoğlu stated ”as a result of the evaluations made at the meeting where 30 out of the 32 clubs participated it was decided not to play the 2020-21 football season we are in and to start the 2021-22 football season one and half months earlier than the normal start date if favourable health conditions are prevalent”
This has come as a severe blow to many football clubs, who have seen no income through gate revenue since March when the 2019-20 was stopped due to the virus. Also the Clubs have missed out on sponsorship money, with some of clubs being in danger of folding altogether and many footballers facing financial hardship.
The majority of footballers have full time jobs but many have not and rely on football earnings as their sole income. With the virus closing many hotels, casinos and the leisure industry, jobs will not easy to come by and will cause financial difficulties especially those with young families.
I am unaware at this stage whether the Government and/or the Football Federation will provide assistance to clubs and footballers.
If, as stated, the 2021-22 season is to start 1½ months earlier, then the season will start in August and pre-season training will begin in July the hottest months of the Cyprus summer! not an ideal situation.
However in these troubled times, health and wellbeing is paramount and we can only hope that a vaccine will be made available in the new year and then maybe the season can start as normal.
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