Khoza confirms season start date and historic Cup cut

PSL chairman Dr Irvin Khoza September 2020
The 72-year-old addressed the media at the league's offices on Wednesday where he announced the decision to push back the return of football

PSL chairman Dr Irvin Khoza has confirmed that the 2020-21 PSL season will get the underway on October 17 and not on October 8 as previously announced. 

According to Khoza, the MTN8 will kick-start the campaign with the first round of league matches pencilled in for October 24. 

"The executive committee, yesterday, decided that the league will be starting on October 17 with the MTN8," Khoza told the media. 

"The DStv Premiership will be starting on the 24th of October. I think it was important to make that announcement.

Goal 50 Revealed: The best 50 players in the world

"This [the partnership between PSL and DStv] is going to be a five-year deal that is going to start on the 24th [of October] to 2025."

Khoza said the league intends to finish the upcoming campaign in early June 2021, adding that the fixture list is almost ready and will be made available to the public in the near future.    

Furthermore, the PSL boss confirmed that there will only two Cup competitions in the form of the MTN8 and Nedbank Cup. 

This after Telkom withdrew their sponsorship, and as a result, the league's executive took a decision not to replace the telecommunication company due to the expected congestion of the fixture list. 

"It's one competition less this season. And I think it's a blessing in disguise. Obviously, the constraints that we see companies suffering from. They are dealing with hostility matters because of the challenges. It just the extend of the damage caused by the coronavirus," he confirmed. 

"Telkom has been a very good partner for us but they are out.

"However, I can gladly announce that from next season, somebody is going to take the place of that competition.

"This year, we didn't want to have the competition because of the congestion we are going to experience. I mean, we are starting the season in October, so it's going to be back-to-back fixtures."

Meanwhile, the veteran football administrator also revealed that the prize money for the league champions will remain unchanged. 

This despite the league acquiring DStv as the premier sponsor following the expiry of Absa's contract at the end of the 2019-20 season.   

"The executive committee told me that I must tell you... I'm just a messenger... that because the commencement of the prize money that was won by Mamelodi Sundowns was the first season of it," he explained.

Article continues below

"So, it can never be that we change it immediately after the first initial stage of the prize money. 

"So, it's going to remain the same prize money [R15 million] as the one that we had last season. I know it's nice and sexy to increase the prize money with the ushering of the new sponsor but we thought it would make business sense because of the constraints in the economy, constraints on the income streams that we do things differently."

Lastly, Khoza confirmed that the PSL awards will take place before the start of the upcoming season but he's unsure of the date and logistics around the event.