9 September 2021 – SAFA has delivered impressive results over the last few weeks as set up below:
COSAFA CUP MEN: After the successful friendly international match against Uganda where the new-look Bafana Bafana team scored an impressive 3-2 victory over the Ugandan Cranes, the bulk of this squad went on to compete in the COSAFA Cup in NMB where the team, against all odds, were crowned the champions of Southern Africa. On the way to winning the title, they had to deal with formidable teams like Zambia, Senegal and other regional opponents.
FIFA WORLD CUP QUALIFICATION, QATAR 2022: The team announced by coach Hugo Broos for the two FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 matches against Zimbabwe and Ghana showed further development of COSAFA Champions squad and were joined by some players who participated in the Tokyo Olympics. This team collected a valuable away point in a goalless draw against Zimbabwe in Harare and scored a decisive and well-deserved 1-0 victory over the Black Stars of Ghana at FNB Stadium.
This places Bafana Bafana as leaders of Group G and the two home and away matches against Ethiopia in October will be critical. Coach Broos and his technical team have indicated that the beginning of the building process is only taking shape and this team will undergo further positive changes.
COSAFA CLUB WOMEN CHAMPIONSHIPS: Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies, the Champions of the Hollywoodbets Super League, represented the country in the CAF Club Women championship COSAFA Region qualifiers. Only the champions from this tournament qualify for the African championship scheduled for Cairo, Egypt in November 2021.
Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies gave a convincing performance by beating Black Rhinos of Zimbabwe 3-0 in the final. They were undefeated on their way to the final scoring 16 goals and only conceding one.
They now join other regional champions in Cairo, Egypt for the inaugural CAF Women Club Champions League championship. We wish Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies all the best in their pursuit for the first star of woman football in South Africa. Mamelodi Sundowns can make history by becoming the first club on the African continent where both men and women teams become continental champions.
Globally, it is only Barcelona teams who have both the UEFA Champions titles in both men and women and Mamelodi Sundowns can emulate the Catalans.
FIFA HISTORICAL VISIT: The FIFA Secretary-General, Madam Fatma Samoura came for her first official visit to SA on a fact-finding mission. The delegation visited Durban, Cape Town and Johannesburg.
In Durban, she watched the COSAFA Women’s Club championship and met various football officials and stakeholders. CAF President, Dr Patrice Motsepe joined her at the final of the CAF Women’s Club final together with the head of delegation of Mamelodi Sundowns team and NEC member, Elizabeth de Koker. The President of SAFA then accompanied them on the visit to Cape Town where the MEC for Sports, woman football structures, teams of the Western Cape and officials of SAFA in Cape Town accompanied the SG to view the Cape Town 2010 FIFA World Cup Stadium.
The authorities in Cape Town informed the SG that the best decision FIFA could have made was to build the 2010 World Cup stadium at its current location. They further indicated that they are urging SAFA to make the bid for 2027 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
In Johannesburg, the FIFA delegation visited the SAFA House where the administration of CEO and COO presented an update of the work and the successes of Vision 2022. They indicated the following:
a) Women’s football: That SAFA has increased women administrators in football structures from 30 to almost 500 with 5 women serving on the NEC of SAFA, two women serving as Presidents of the Regions and all Regions having women as Vice-President.
b) National teams: All women national teams are coached by women with all assistants being women as well.
c) Hollywoodbets Super League: The FIFA delegation acknowledged that the quality of football has improved tremendously as a result of the introduction of the league.
d) Women overseas: Were informed that most Banyana Banyana players were now contracted overseas and some of them were playing in the UEFA Champions League.
e) Education: That 85% of Banyana Banyana players are graduates, funded by the FIFA Legacy Trust.
f) Banyana Banyana have been champions 6 times in COSAFA and have won back-to-back 4 titles in the past four years and qualified for the FIFA World Cup in France in 2019.
g) Banyana Banyana are currently ranked 3rd on the continent.
HIGH PERFORMANCE CENTRE (HPC): SAFA has a women academy at the HPC and currently 80% of the current Banyana Banyana players are products of the HPC in Tshwane where the Legacy Trust has ploughed in huge resources.
WOMEN REFEREES: SAFA has so far produced 295 women referees and some of them are officiating in the Premier Soccer League (PSL) and some are on the CAF and FIFA panel.
SAFA has acquired sponsorship from ShowMax and regularly have women referee workshops. Only women officials officiate in the Hollywoodbets Super League.
WOMEN COACHING COURSES: SAFA run regular women coaching courses with the recent being in Western Cape, Northern Cape and in KZN where the course was in partnership with COSAFA. This is an ongoing programme.
GOVERNANCE: The FIFA delegation was also given an update on changes in Governance in SAFA, that the day-to-day operations are run by the CEO. SAFA has also appointed Ms Lydia Monyepao as the COO and Ms Amanda Dlamini as the Commercial Manager.
We informed FIFA that both Lydia and Amanda are former Banyana Banyana players and both of them finalised their academic qualifications with the help of the World Cup Legacy Trust, with Lydia holding a Masters’ Degree in Sports Management.
SAFA has also established an Ethics Committee headed by two Supreme Court Judges in which Judge Sisi Khampepe is the chair of the committee. SAFA also has an integrity officer, Mr Alex Abercrombie who also served on the bench of the Western Cape.
SAFA is in the process of appointing the Governance Committee.
SAFA has reported surplus for the 2019-20 financial year with a clean audit.
FNB STADIUM VISIT: The FIFA SG was also keen to visit the FNB Stadium which was venue for the opening ceremony, opening match and final of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. They were very impressed with the stadium and added that South Africa Stadiums compare with the best in the world.
The FIFA SG met with the Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture, Nathi Mthethwa and informed the Minister that they were highly impressed by the progress made by the country under the current leadership and in particular impressed by women football and women in football.
The SG said that the concern for FIFA is that no African team has ever won the FIFA World Cup and even gone as far as the final. They said based on what they have seen in South Africa and that Banyana Banyana are ranked number 3; they believe that the Top 5 African countries can and must make it to the final stages of the FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia/New Zealand.
They further said that given the observation during their inspection that South Africa will have a strong chance should they decide to bid for the 2027 FIFA Women’s World Cup. They further thanked the Minister for the process of the vaccination and said FIFA was keen to see spectators across the globe back into the stadiums. The Minister confirmed that he was happy with the progress of SAFA and thanked SAFA for supporting the initiative for the vaccination drive and subsequent return for fans to the stadiums.
ENGAGEMENT WITH THE SPONSORS: The FIFA delegation also met with various commercial partners of SAFA and expressed their appreciation for their support of football and in particular women football.
They reiterated to the partners that they are very happy with the progress in South African football and she is looking forward to return to the country to see the ongoing positive progress.
SAFA also reported on the successful conclusion of the ABC Motsepe with two teams promoted into the professional ranks Northern Cape, Hungry Lions and Platinum City Rovers from Klerksdorp. The Winners of the ABC Motsepe play offs pocket R1,25m, the winner of Hollywoodbets Super League wins R2m while the Kay Motsepe Schools champions walk away with R1 million.