SA needs professional women’s soccer league – Mbalula

2012-08-03 11:20

Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula has called for a professional women’s football league in South Africa.

He was speaking after Banyana Banyana returned home defeated from their Olympic debut yesterday.

“They met the best and were defeated, but we are still proud of them,” said Mbalula, who greeted the team on their arrival at OR Tambo International.

“The future looks bright, though, for women’s football in South Africa and we need to engage Safa (the SA Football Association) on trying to get going a professional women’s league in this country, because that is the only advantage the other countries have on us.

“Well done girls, and we are aware you could have done a lot better, but qualifying and being at the Games is victory in itself.”

The national women’s side failed to win a match at the London Games, losing 4-1 to Sweden in their tournament opener, and going down 3-0 to Canada in their second match.

They played to a goalless draw in their final pool game against world champions Japan on Tuesday, but the result was tarnished after the Japanese side admitted they had been instructed to manufacture a draw to ensure an easier run in the playoffs.

“We were surely not disgraced. We should applaud the girls for their good showing,” said Safa president Kirsten Nematandani.

“Playing against such established countries is no mean feat, but our girls stood their ground, even though they went down in two matches out of three.

“We are proud of you girls, and are confident that going forward we will grow even more.”

Banyana captain Amanda Dlamini said they hoped to build on their form ahead of the African Women’s Championships in Equatorial Guinea, which starts in October.

“This was an unforgettable and proud moment for me personally, as well as for the whole team,” Dlamini said.

“Also, it was an experience of a lifetime, and we learnt a lot as a team and we are confident those lessons will stand us in good stead when we tackle the African Women’s Championships.”

Striker Portia Modise, who scored the team’s only goal against Sweden, a blinding shot from 45m out, said that strike was one of the highlights of her career.

“I cannot stand here and take all the glory,” Modise said.

“Gratitude should go to my team-mates, because I could not have done it without them.

“I am still excited over the goal, and I must agree it was a great goal.

“It’s one I will remember for a very long time.”

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.