African football referees keeping fit ahead of return to competition

Following in the footsteps of European leagues, African football associations are preparing to resume competition and the match officials will be ready for the long-awaited return.

Continental competitions were suspended in March due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, and referees have needed to work hard on maintaining their fitness during the halt in competition.

The top referees in Africa have also been involved with online courses under the supervision of the newly constituted Technical Board of Experts in collaboration with the Confederation of African Football (Caf) Refereeing Department.

During a video-conference meeting on Tuesday, Caf president Ahmad Ahmad explained the decision to constitute an independent body of experts is in line with CAF’s strategic reforms policy ‘Transform CAF 2021’ launched earlier this year.

He commended the board for their hard work during the period of the lockdown and their commitment to raise the standard of officiating on the continent, while urging them to respect protocols of their respective state authorities during these unusual times to control the pandemic.

“It is important that our referees and assistant referees remain in the best of shapes for the resumption of competitions,” Ahmad said.

“Officiating is an essential part of the game and we have worked hard especially during this period to get the best personnel for our matches to project the image of the continent as well.”

There are currently 770 000 confirmed Covid-19 infections in Africa, with South Africa accounting for 394 948 of the cases. South Africa have the highest number of cases in Africa, well ahead of Egypt with 89 745 infections. In fact, South Africa have the fifth-highest number of infections in the world.

In partnership with ANA and Sports Leo

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