14 December 2017 – South Africa National Teams senior manager Barney Kujane says he is excited with the u17 squad that coach Molefi Ntseki has put together saying a solid development side is the foundation for a bright future.
Ntseki has put together a Select Squad of 43 players, comprising exclusively of school going players.
The squad which has been divided into two will play in a mini tournament in Lesotho. The event was initially scheduled to be a Four Nations tournament but Swaziland and Botswana pulled out at the last minute, leaving South Africa and hosts Lesotho to put up two teams each.
The first matches involving South A and B against Lesotho A and B will take place on Friday, 15 December 2017 with the final scheduled for Saturday.
“I am so excited about this programme because this falls within SAFA President, Dr (Danny) Jordaan’s Vision 2022. Building a firm u17 side augurs well for all other national teams – that is the u20, u23 and ultimately the Senior National Team,” said Kujane.
South Africa u17 will take part in COSAFA Cup tournament in Mauritius mid-next year before getting involved in the AFCON qualifiers and Kujane says with little happening on the continent regarding the u17 age group, the Lesotho outing was invaluable for the players confidence and exposure.
Kujane said the fact that all of the current u17 Select Team had been picked from schools around the country should propel Provinces, Regions and LFAs to invest more in schools football.
SAFA has taken over the running the Schools’ Football in the country and the move is already showing positive signs following the selection of this u17 side.