Nedbank brings reality football

14 Feb

Over the years it seems reality television shows are taking over on our screens. Most of these shows discover the most raw of talents for South Africa, most of these shows come in the form of music talent shows. It is refreshing that the green bank will make things happen for potential football stars a well.

This is not the first reality football talent finding show, it seems to be the exciting of all (well, it did get me really excited), well mostly because the chosen Ke Yona team will play against the winners of this season’s Nedbank Cup.

Few years ago, soccer lovers had the chance to witness the discovery of young, gifted footballers through shows like the Coca Cola Football Stars and Sokka Kings.  Football Stars brought us players like Happy Jele and Mandla Masango, who now are in the books of two biggest Soweto giants, Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs.

While Sokka King winner Eric Macheru got a chance to play/ train with Ajax Cape Town and Tottanham Hotspur as part of his prize. Sadly, Macheru is no longer in the footballing circles, he is now an actor. He was on SABC 1’s drama Skeem Sami. I wish that show was won by someone who had the stomach to stay in football, but hey what can one say, he was voted for and won.

Which brings me to my next point, I hope the people who will trial to be part of this Ke Yona team are people who are passionate about the game, well not that I’m saying Eric wasn’t passionate enough. Trials will be held throughout the country, in all

The requirements of potential team should be between the ages of 18 and 35, will be selected by South Africa’s footballing legends and they will live their lives in front of the camera until the final 18 team members are selected. Members of the public will also have a chance to choose their favourite player to be part of the squad. This is a big opportunity for those who never got the chance to make it to pro football to try their luck.





Banyana need competition

1 Aug


Working as the women’s football correspondent or reporter for my former newspaper has helped me build relations with a couple of female footballers, some of the best in the country I say. And whenever I get to chat with them, not on record, we always get to the point of a professional league.  Seem, these ladies don’t really get enough competition among themselves. The only time they compete is during the Absa Women’s League, which caters for Under 19s and the Sasol National league. The problem with these two leagues is that they only run for a short while throughout the year.

Unlike their male counterparts, they only compete once a year and only then do the national squad scouts get a chance to watch and select players for the national team. Now, I think this is a disadvantage to the country and the players themselves as they don’t get enough time to showcase what they are capable of. This then leads, I think, to the failure of our women’s team on the world stage.

When Abantwana qualified for the Under 17 World Cup in Germany in 2010, this seemed like a breakthrough for women’s football in the country. But when we were whooped 10-1 by Germany, that was a sign that there is still so much to improve our women’s football.

Banyana Banyana fought very hard to qualify for the 2012 London Olympics. When they beat the Ethiopians 6-2 on aggregate, this meant our girls have a fighting spirit. But that was just an African country ranked only number 34 in the CAF rankings. Unfortunately, they were drawn against top ranked teams in the world. And yes, they didn’t do that great.

Now, what is the country or the football association doing to improve the standard of our football that we don’t get embarrassed on the world stages? Could there have been something done between the two years that we’ve qualified for these big tournaments?

I believe so. But so far, how much of improvements have been made? Nothing much really. South Africa needs to uphold all of our football teams the same way. Bafana is just as important as Banyana, so are the other national teams.

Chippa brings flavour to ekasi

8 Jul

Finally the Cape has a team in the PSL that’s coming straight from ekasi. This is all thanks to Chippa United FC which has won promotion to Mzantsi’s elite league this upcoming season. This team from Phillipi in the Cape Flats, as the first team from ekasi to make it to the most lucrative league in the country, probably carries the hope and pride of all soccer lovers at black townships in the Cape if not the whole of the Western Cape.

Soccer lovers here have for years been crying for a team representing our townships to make it to the PSL. At some point there were four Cape Town based clubs playing in the ranks of the PSL in one season but still one didn’t feel the same sense of pride I experienced when the Chilli Boys, as Chippa United are affectionately known, was promoted to the PSL. This is because I never felt that teams like Cape Town Spurs, Helenic and even Santos were representing the hood I’m from. But with Chippa, it’s a whole different story.

A sport journalist at the office told me when the Promotion-Relegation Play-Offs started it would be more beneficial for the paper if Chippa made it to the PSL. He explained Chippa is more in touch with the community because they have close ties with the media, which was more than what he could say about Santos that apparently overlooked us (the best-selling newspaper in the Western Cape) for reasons known only to them.

I just can’t wait for the PSL season to begin so that I can put on my Chilli Boys t-shirt and drive to Phillipi Stadium (that is if they keep using it as their home base) and support the boys from the hood – from MY hood. Sorry Kaizer Chiefs, but charity begins at home. Besides you have more than enough fans to go around.

This piece was contributed by Anele Mfazwe who writes for Son in Cape Town

Nomvethe makes a clean sweep at awards

29 May

The Premier Soccer League bid farewell to the 2011/2012 season in style at a glittering Awards function held at the Lyric Theatre at Gold Reef City.

The ceremony was opened with the Chairman’s (PSL) award which was awarded to Kaizer Chiefs chairman, Kaizer Motaung. He was honoured for being one of the people who founded the league.
Moroka Swallows striker, Siyabonga Nomvethe, was the big winner on the evening scooping the coveted PSL Footballer of the Year Award alongside the Absa Premiership Player of the Season, Absa Premiership Players Player of the Season and the Absa Premiership Top Goal Scorer Award.

Winners in the other categories are as follows below:
Nedbank Cup Player of the Tournament – R100 000                                                     
Nyasha Mushekwi -Winner                                                
Nedbank Cup Young Player of the Tournament – R25 000
Thabiso Nkoana – Winner
Telkom Knockout Player of the Tournament – R200 000
Benni McCarthy – Winner
MTN8 Last Man Standing – R150 000
Oupa Manyisa – Winner
Absa Premiership Player of the Season – R150 000
Siyabonga Nomvethe – Winner
Absa Premiership Players Player of the Season – R150 000
Siyabonga Nomvethe – Winner
Absa Premiership Goalkeeper of the Season – R50 000
Wayne Sandilands – Winner
Absa Premiership Red Hot Young Player of the Season – R50 000
Ronwen Williams

Goal drought could cost SA World Cup qualification

25 May

On Sunday the Premier Soccer League will be honouring the season’s top performers, this will be including the top goalscorer.
Like the past season, we haven’t seen many goal but Siyabonga Nomvethe should be credited for netting 20 goal. Unfortunately he did not reach the benchmark of 26 goals. If he did, he was not only gonna receive a cheque but he was also going to score himself a car as well.
Santos’ Eleazor Rodgers followed in Nomvethe’s shadow with only 12 goals, which marks an eight goals gap.
What worries me is the fact that in the past three seasons the top goalscorers didn’t reach that number.
Last season, Knowledge Musona walked away with the Goalden Boot with only 15 goals!
And the season before that one Katlego Mphela dominated the back on nets with 17.
As we prepare for the Afcon, I can’t help worry that we are going to drown in our back yard. Our strikers lack when it comes to finding the back of the net.
I’m grateful coach Pitso Mosimane roped in Nomvethe but we can’t only depend on him.
The upcoming friendlies and World Cup qualifiers should be used as ‘practice’ in finding the back of the net. Otherwise we are going to be a laughing stock come January 2013 and not qualify for the World Cup in Brazil.

PSL awards nominees announced

16 May

The annual Premier Soccer League awards nominees have been announced.
The glitzy event will take place on 27 May at a venue yet to be announced.
The PSL awards honour the season’s outstanding performances including the top goal scorer.
Here are the nominees for the 2011/12 season:

Absa Hot Young Player:
• Lucky Baloyi- Kaizer Chiefs
• Ronwen Williams- SuperSport United
• Lehlohonolo Masalesa- Bidvest Wits

Absa Premiership Goalkeeper of the Season
• Wayne Sandilands- Mamelodi Sundowns
• Ronwen Williams- SuperSport United
• Moeneeb Josephs- Orlando Pirates

Absa-lutely Awesome Goal
• Clifford Mulenga- Golden Arrows vs Bloemfontein Celtic
• David Mathebula- Moroka Swallows vs Orlando Pirates
• Benni McCarthy- Orlando Pirates vs Maritzburg United

Absa Premiership Coach of the Season
• Gavin Hunt- SuperSport United
• Gordon Igesund- Moroka Swallows
• Steve Khompela- Free State Stars

Absa Premiership Player of the Season
• David Mathebula- Moroka Swallows
• Siyabonga Sangweni- Orlando Pirates
• Siyabonga Nomvethe- Moroka Swallows

Absa Premiership Player’s Player of the Season
• Teko Modise- Mamelodi Sundowns
• David Mathebula- Moroka Swallows
• Siyabonga Nomvethe- Moroka Swallows

Nedbank Cup Player of the Tournament                                       
•Nyasha Mushekwi                            
•Paulos Masehe
•Hlompo Kekana

Nedbank Cup Young Player of the Tournament
•Grant Kekana
•Thabiso Ntloana
•Mzikayise Mashaba

Telkom Knockout Player of the Tournament
•Benni McCarthy
•Siyabonga Sangweni
•Ryan Chapman

MTN8 Last Man Standing
•Oupa Manyisa
•Musa Nyatama
•Clayton Daniels

Swallows’ Nomvethe will receive the Lesley Manyathela Goalden Boot award. With one match to go, he is leading the pack with 20 goal and is likely to net more on Saturday when Swallows meet Maritzburg United in their last match at the Harry Gwala stadium.

Sundowns drops the ball while Pirates take advantage

21 Apr

Mamelodi Sundowns seem to be getting “cold feet” as the season is wrapping up.

Sundowns who were once six points clear as log leaders have now dropped and are now two points behind defending champions, Orlando Pirates.

On Wednesday Bafana ba Style suffered a 2-1 loss at home to Platinum Stars and on the same night the Buccaneers grabbed a point when they drew 0-0 with Moroka Swallows at the Dobsonville stadium.

It wasn’t any different when the teams went on to play their 26th matches of the season, yet again the Tshwane based side suffered their second loss in three days when they lost 1-0 to Maritzburg United. United had come into the game with heads held up after a 1-0 win against Kaizer Chiefs.

This gave Ezimnyama Ngenkani a chance to hang on to the number one spot when they held Bidvest Wits to a 0-0 drew, a score line that was last seen between these two in 2010.

Pirates are now two points ahead of Sundowns however the Teko Modise led side has goal difference on their side, which unfortunately will not help them if they do not win their matches.

Will the tug of war for the number one position bring us a thrilling finish to the season or will it be full of mediocre draws and losses?