Futsal to impact SA

2013-09-06 00:00

THE South African Indoor Football Association (Saifa), under the leadership of Pietermaritzburg attorney Poobalan Govindasamy, has launched a national indoor football league that will kick off next month.

Govindasamy, who is the president of Saifa, and sits on the executive of South African Football Association (Safa), told The Witness yesterday that the initial plan was to start off with a league of eight teams and grow by two teams every year until there is a 16-team competition.

He said the league was made possible by the 2010 Fifa World Cup Legacy Trust that saw their being given R1,6 million to get the project off the ground.

“Had we not hosted the World Cup, this windfall of R1,6 million would not have been available,” said Govindasamy.

This year’s competition will see two Pietermaritzburg sides in Maritzburg Hotspurs and Young Natalians taking on Ethekwini City from Durban, Tshwane City, Flo Stars from Mpumalanga, OBC Chickens from the Free State, Cape Town Titans and Western Province Eagles.

With some of world football’s biggest stars in the likes of Ronaldinho, Robinho and Neymar having started in futsal, Govindasamy hoped it would have the same impact in South Africa.

“In Brazil, they don’t play 11-man football up until a certain age. We want to say to South Africa: ‘Let’s play futsal before we play football’,” he said.

“In futsal, you touch the ball more. You develop this love affair with the ball and you become a skilled player,” he said, adding that they had the full backing of Safa to get the league off the ground.

“We’re thankful to Safa and the 2010 Fifa World Cup Legacy Trust for letting us get this off the ground,” said Govindasamy.

The registration of players was currently under way, and the average age was around 20. The players would all be completely amateur, but Govindasamy said the goal was to one day “create employment through another stream of football” and have a fully professional league.

The teams would also be flown around the country to avoid their having to travel by roads.

“Flights are going to be the most expensive, but we’ve lost a lot of players on the roads,” he said in reference to an accident that killed nine players in the Eastern Cape in July.

Besides the national league, Govindasamy said they had urged futsal clubs to get involved in regional leagues, to act as a feeder system. The regional league would also be used to promote clubs into the top flight.

The national league will kick off on October 5.

Join the conversation!

24.com 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.

24.com 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
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

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

Hello 

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 24.com network.

Settings

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.