Pressing Issues: Will PSL's new Branding stick?

2013-07-08 10:00

It was William Shakespeare who penned the line: “Ambition should be made of sterner stuff.”

Brand de Villiers is quite an ambitious man to have the guts to take up the poisoned chalice of Premier Soccer League (PSL) CEO.

Given that only two of his seven predecessors in the PSL’s 17 years of existence have seen their contracts through, it must be one of the toughest jobs in the country.

Also, Cambridge Mokanyane, from whom he is taking over, has been in an acting capacity since July last year.

Trevor Philips and Kjetil Siem are the only pair to have finished their terms. I don’t know if the fact that they are both the only foreigners to have held the position has anything to do with that.

In fact, Philips has had two stints: one as the PSL’s founding makhulubaas in 1996, and then coming back in 2002 to save a then sinking ship.

Zola Majavu, who stepped up from being the PSL’s pro-forma prosecutor to the hot seat in 2011, lasted all of two months before leaving in a huff.

His successor, Stan Matthews, who had been a member of the executive committee, only survived five months before tendering his resignation.

In between, there has been Joe Ndhlela, Robin Petersen and Mandla Mchunu.

While no firm reasons have been given as to why PSL bosses never last, it is known the world over that football clubs are owned by extremely monied people.

For this bunch, it is very difficult to take instructions from anyone.

Members of the board of governors – the body consisting of the 16 PSL and the same number of National First Division club chairmen – have been reported to have on occasion reminded the previous CEOs that “this is our business”.

Why, in an extremely satirical and hilarious piece in October following Majavu’s departure, journalist John Goliath asked: “Can you make a good cup of tea? Are you the type of person who speaks only when he/she is spoken to? Do you never question authority?”

He went on to say if you had answered “yes” to these questions, he had an opportunity of a lifetime for you as a PSL boss.

It’s definitely not a laughing matter, but there must be something wrong at the PSL for its CEOs not to serve their full terms.

Have those in charge attended to this? Is De Villiers strong enough to stand the test of time?

These will be answered as his tenure continues, but we are told the man is an expert on brands and branding (pun intended).?Maybe he is the right man to take the PSL brand to another level and has the required thick skin.

Welcome, Mr De Villiers!

» smseleku@citypress.co.za

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