CAPE TOWN – The South African Football Association have blamed the Covid-19 lockdown for the kit debacle that saw Bafana Bafana players and technical staff wearing different kits during the recent friendly internationals against Namibia and Zambia.
While the players wore the swanky new kits provided by Le Coq Sportif, the technical staff, including coach Molefi Ntseki wore old tracksuits with the Nike sign blacked out by what looked like masking tape.
On Saturday, Safa claimed the reason for this was due to the strict lockdown regulations that were announced by the South African government.
“It is common knowldge that the Covid-19 lockdown regulations were announced almost immediately after signing the kit deal, thereby affecting the production and timelines of the delivery of the kit as almost all sectors were shut down including the textile manufacturing industry,” Safa’s Dominic Chimhavi said in a statement.
“Similarly, international matches were also discontinued. It’s therefore, clear that both the delivery date of the kit and resumption of international matches depended on the easing of government lockdown regulations.
While the senior national teams, Bafana Bafana and Banyana Banyana will be kitted out by Le Coq Sportif for their upcoming games, the junior national teams will continue donning the Nike kit for upcoming tournaments, and will change to the new kit by January, Safa said.
Safa, however, did not specify whether the national team’s technical staff will be kitted out by Le Coq Sportif or Nike for their Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers against Sao Tome and Principe next month.