13 November 2017 – The inaugural WE ARE FOOTBALL Festival held on the 11th November 2017 at People’s Park in Durban was declared a resounding success by all involved.
The concept was developed by Errol Madlala, Director of Pitch Sports Entertainment and Media (PTY) Ltd in partnership with Lee-Roy Newton, group MD of Newton Sports Agency (PTY).
The festival coincided with the 25th Anniversary of Bafana Bafana’s first game back after readmission and some of the legends of that team and the Class of 96 who won the Africa Cup of Nations were in attendance, along with the prestigious trophy – Neil Tovey, Lucas Radebe, Mark Williams, Doctor Khumalo and Phil Masinga all added their star quality to the event as they thrilled the crown by donning the South Africa jersey once again and featuring in an exhibition 6-a-side game.
FC Classique walked away with the trophy in the 6-a-side tournament, whilst e-Gamer Nicholas James took first place in the FIFA 18 competition.
The festival was a celebration of football and its fans, bringing the game to people in a new, innovative and accessible way.
“Football has been somewhat one-dimensional for a long time and we wanted to create an event that brought the game to fans in a different way,” said Madlala.
The Festival combined traditional playing with a new digital space as well as music and food.
There was a 6-a-side tournament, e-gaming (FIFA18) as well as DJ’s Fresh, Tbo Touch and Tira keeping the fans entertained throughout the day.
“Football is part of South Africans DNA and so we wanted to create a space where a love of football can be celebrated in a unique way,” said Newton.
The legends in attendance were all complimentary of the day and loved being a part of the activities.
“You can retire from football but you can never stay away from the game. We live for this sport and what WE ARE FOOTBALL has come up with is a brilliant idea that needs all our support. It’s wonderful to get a chance to interact with the fans in a new, refreshing way. well done to the organisers for this magnificent idea,” said Radebe.
Khumalo echoed these sentiments saying:
“I must admit I have fallen in love with the WE ARE FOOTBALL concept. Long may this continue because this type of event which showcases football in creative, new ways, is so unique and much needed in South Africa. Congratulations for this great move,” added Khumalo.
Masinga was also happy to have been part of the whole event:
“Having to don the national team jersey again after such a long time brought back so many great memories. Interacting with the fans was also just what the doctor ordered to ensure we don’t lose touch with those that love the game as much as we do. I am glad I was part of the whole imitative and would like to be back again for the next one,” said Masinga.
SAFA CEO Dennis Mumble watching from the touchline was also inspired by the event.
“It was great to see our football legends come and wow the crowds in the manner they did, and their presence serves to inspire the many young footballers that came to watch them. Fans have seen the likes of Radebe, Tovey and Doctor on television, but to mix it up with them up close and personal is a dream come true for many. For that we are grateful to WE ARE FOOTBALL for making us a part of this phenomenal initiative, which we hope will change a lot of lives,” said Mumble.
The event could not have taken place without the support of a number of partners including the hosts, the City of Durban Department of Sport Development and Recreation, SABC Sport, Telkom ,SAB, Touch-HD, BET, Lexus and others.
“We will continue to look at the key moments within football in South Africa and Africa in order to continue to promote the success of African football through this festival. We have started in KZN but we would like to see this event travel around South Africa and the rest of the continent, plans are being put in place to do just that,” concluded Newton.
For further inquiries, kindly contact:
Lilitha Vabaza – 0764311559 firstname.lastname@example.org
Errol Madlala – 0829217434 – email@example.com
Lee-Roy Newton – 031 312 7960 – firstname.lastname@example.org
Or visit us at www.wearefootball.co.za and follow us on @WeAreFootballZA on social media