Time for shortcuts in football development is over – Gordon Igesund

2014-04-19 12:16

Bafana Bafana coach Gordon Igesund believes the Metropolitan under-19 Premier Cup is leading the development agenda and that similar tournaments will give a major boost to the struggling senior national team.

Speaking to City Press on the sidelines of the 26th edition of the yearly showpiece currently under way in Belhar, Cape Town, Igesund said the time for shortcuts was over.

The incumbent SA Football Association (Safa) leadership was on the right track in tackling poor development that has had a devastating impact on Bafana’s performances in recent times, he said.

“Danny [Jordaan] knows what he is doing and having pronounced development as a priority at Safa bears testimony [to this]. There is a lot to learn from this tournament, from which some of the best footballers have emerged,” he said.

The event has produced stars like Benni McCarthy, Steven Pienaar and Ayanda Patosi.

Igesund is attending the competition to motivate the players, some of whom are expected to represent the country in the next four years.

“The standard of play here is very high and the tournament’s track record speaks for itself. This is the talent we need to monitor and guard closely,” said Igesund, whose contract as senior national team coach comes to an end in August.

The games, which started on Wednesday, conclude on Monday. Reigning champions Ajax Cape Town are looking to defend the title but will face tough competition from Kaizer Chiefs, who are coached by former winger Arthur ‘10111’ Zwane.

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