This past Saturday will be remembered as a day when the mighty Manchester United were held to a 1-1 draw by Ajax Cape Town.
With the game almost up and both teams still level 0-0, it took a moment of brilliance from Alcardo van Graan to back-flick from a corner to stun Man U as Ajax went ahead, 1-0. It was an amazing goal!
And if it wasn’t for the added four minutes of extra time, Ajax Cape Town would have taken the scalp of Manchester United.
And this brings me to my point.
When Bafana Bafana won the African Cup of Nations in 1996, our national football team was a multi-cultural, rainbow nation of South African footballers, with a white coach in the form of Clive Barker.
Since then, and to be quite blunt, South African soccer has been in a state of steady decline. We’ve made no progress on the world stage and we need to question why.
When our national football team has full representation of all race groups across South Africa, then we’re very strong.
Over the past ten years, the national selectors have seemed to favour Gauteng-based teams and players when forming our national squad. But this has not worked for us.
We need to form a national team that doesn’t look like to colour, but that is representative of all of South Africa; blacks, whites, coloureds and Indians.
Only then, will South African football once again rise to the level where we’re competing with the world’s best.
It’s time that SAFA embraces the new South Africa and begins the process of transforming the sport, to incorporate all South Africans. There is no longer place for racism in South African football.
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