THE Philippines Football League (PFL) has begun the process of testing players, coaches, and staff for COVID-19 in preparation for the resumption of training.
PFL commissioner Coco Torre said swab tests started on Wednesday at the Philippine Football Federation office, after the league got the nod of the Inter-Agency Task Force to resume training.
“We have the clubs undergoing testing since this is a procedural requirement for them to resume training,” said Torre during a recent video press conference. “Once you are negative, they can immediately train.”
Torre hopes that the resumption of training will eventually lead to the IATF allowing pro football to be played.
“This is a big step to resume the league,” Torre said. “Hopefully, in due time, we will be given the go signal.”
PFF president Mariano ‘Nonong’ Araneta is looking forward to the resumption of the PFL especially with its major sponsor Qatar Airways keeping its commitment to support the league.
“If we will be allowed to start the PFL, we have a sponsor. It’s a good development for football. I thought that with what’s happening with the pandemic, Qatar Airways will tell us to wait because of the travel restrictions. But they have made good with their promise to support Philippine football,” Araneta said.
The PFL is eyeing a ‘bubble’ concept if given the nod by the IATF to go on with its 2020 season, with matches being played at the PFF Training Center in Carmona, Cavite.
“They train first and then they will decide (IATF) depending on the situation on whether the actual matches can be held in Carmona. One of the considerations of the IATF is the fact that we have represented that all the matches will be held in the PFF National Training Center in Carmona. We can create a bubble for that so that the risk of infection is lower,” said PFF general secretary Edwin Gastanes.