Pressing Issues: Young blood!

2013-05-13 10:00

Benedict Dithapelo Keorapetse turned 15 on February 16. According to his dad, Mosimanegape, he’s a sharpshooter in front of goal.

This has seen the Grade 9 student travel to Spain for trials and to South America with his school soccer team in the past year.

Mosimanegape will never forget the day his son was born.

He had made all the arrangements to watch his beloved Bafana Bafana play in the 1998 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) in Burkina Faso.

But alas, his son had other ideas.

His wife went into labour just as he was settling down with a few cold ones and the braai meat already in the warmer.

So he only saw television highlights of how a spindly-legged, 20-year-old Benedict McCarthy scored in the eighth, 11th, 19th and 21st minutes to announce his arrival at international level with a bang.

The game was a 4-1 demolition of neighbours Namibia in front of a crowd of 9?500 at the Stade Municipal, far away in Bobo-Dioulasso.

For the record, China Uutoni scored the solitary goal for Namibia, in the 68th minute.

Benedict Saul McCarthy turns 36 on November 12, while this year’s Afcon hosted by South Africa was the ninth version since the 1998 Burkina Faso event.

Now Keorapetse, who was born the same night McCarthy made his mark with those four goals, is knocking at the door of international football.

This story brings into sharp focus just how sluggish South African football development has been, given that, had McCarthy not been injured, chances are Gordon Igesund would have roped him into his squad for the Afcon finals in January.

While it’s a nice story to relate how the 45-year-old Andre Arendse managed to come to Bidvest Wits’ rescue, with the likes of Lucky Lekgwathi, Siyabonga Nomvethe and Delron Buckley still showing our youngsters a thing or two in the domestic league, this should nevertheless not have to be the case.

Every once in while, oldies can come to the party, but only, as in Brazil, where coaches use one or two veterans in the national team to bring stability and to pass on the torch.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.