As part of its preparation to the return to training of the “Philippines Football League brought to you by Qatar Airways” (PFL) clubs, the Philippine Football Federation (PFF) conducted a mandatory RT-PCR/Swab Test last Wednesday, 8 July 2020 at the PFF House of Football in Pasig City.
The RT-PCR/Swab Test is part of the Medical Protocols under the PFF Operations Protocol for the PFL requiring all the coaches, players and staff of PFL clubs to undergo testing before they can participate in the training sessions. PFF staff also underwent the Swab Test as part of PFF’s preparation to return-to-work at the PFF office on 16 July 2020, circumstances permitting.
The RT-PCR test was conducted by Safeguard, a Department of Health (DOH) accredited testing center.
“As we anticipate the return to training of PFL clubs, it is paramount that all players , coaches and staff are tested Negative before they start training,” said PFF general secretary Atty. Edwin Gastanes. “The health and safety of the players and officials and PFL organizing staff remain a priority in our continuing efforts for the return of professional competitive football.”
“This is a big step for us in resuming the PFL,” added PFL commissioner Coco Torre. “(The testing) is a procedural requirement for clubs to return to training. Once they’ve been tested negative, then they can immediately train.”
Azkals Development Team (ADT) goalkeeper Anthony Pinthus and Stallion Laguna FC head coach Ernest Nierras were among the 155 players, officials, and staff that have undergone the RT-PCR/Swab Test.
“The swab test was properly organized,” said Pinthus. “We hope that once the test results come out, it will allow the teams to conduct their training sessions again.”
“We are all excited that PFF and PFL made all the efforts to restart football,” explained Nierras. “It is important that we prioritize the safety not only of the players and coaches but also of the PFF staff and PFL organizers. Our team, Stallion Laguna FC will follow all the protocols set by PFF and PFL.”