Players can benefit from staying in SA – Igesund

2013-04-29 17:20

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Bafana Bafana coach Gordon Igesund says local football is in the strongest position it has been in for many years.

“Players now, are not going overseas as often,” said Igesund in Soweto today, where two new junior soccer leagues were launched by the SA Football Association (Safa), using R28 million from the 2010 Fifa World Cup Legacy Trust.

Igesund said the platform provided by development plans and the South African Premier Soccer League would breed success in the years to come.

The tide had turned, and experience abroad was no longer the ultimate prize, he said.

“Previously we wanted our players to go overseas to gain the experience and come back for South Africa to benefit.

“I think South Africa can benefit now by players not going overseas.

“There's enough money now in the Premier Soccer League and our league is one of the best run leagues in the world. We've got a lot of money coming into the game now through the various sponsors.”

Players would go through many years of intensive training and development starting at a young age, before they would be ready to attract big clubs outside Africa, according to Igesund.

“No player at 13 or 14 will go overseas to play for a club.

“He will go at 22 or 23 when he gets recognised for the good work he's doing in South Africa, and the good work he's doing as a player.

“Whether Arsenal, Man United, Chelsea or Barcelona buy him, it will be after he's been through development and he knows how to play.”

Despite the Safa announcement to start programs from under-13 level, Igesund said children should be groomed from an even earlier age.

“I'm talking about development from grassroots level -- from under-sevens, under-eights -- that's really a lot of years of development and the player learning how to play the game.”

Igesund also highlighted the need for players to come through the various age groups.

“If we have an under-17 team playing the same way the national team is playing, it will progress the player further and further.

“And by the time the players come to the senior national team, they won't have to be trained for six months to make them play a certain way.

"So that's why the team has to be groomed from grassroots level.”

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

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.