The South African Football Association (SAFA) is hoping to take advantage of the world’s football mother body, FIFA’s women’s football strategy by enhancing the commercial side of the National Women’s League.
This was revealed by SAFA President Danny Jordaan at the press conference at SAFA House on Thursday to welcome two newly promoted teams from the Sasol provincial women’s league, national champions JVW FC and runners-up Ma-Indies FC.
Already the National Women’s League enjoys weekly TV coverage from SABC Sport and Jordaan says this is something they have to build on, as they build towards accessing FIFA’s $2billion funding.
But to achieve all of this, SAFA has got some serious challenges to overcome and some of them include some disorganisation of its structures when it comes to administering women’s football and its something Jordaan also admitted needs to be rectified. He knows that it will take more than just the talk shops and slogans to get this project going.
There’s also the possibility of the regional club championship organized by the Council of Southern African Football Associations (COSAFA) starting soon and CAF is also talking about starting an African Women’s Champions League at continental level.
Jordaan, who is also the CAF Vice-President, expects women’s football to be at a different level in five years’ time.
Banyana Banyana right-back Lebo Ramalepe was instrumental in leading her team to gaining promotion to the national women’s league.
They lost 2-0 to JVW FC in the final at Tsakane stadium last weekend but the bigger mission had been accomplished.
Ramalepe, who has been part of Banyana for the past five years, says she could’ve easily joined another team in the NWL but decided to stick with one of Limpopo’s oldest women’s football teams.
A lot of credit has to go to Banyana Banyana captain Janine Van Wyk, who had the vision to start her own team and now they will be playing at the highest level.
JVW FC is a unique team amongst all the teams in the NWL as they are an all-rounded football club with active junior teams. She says the difference this year was to strengthen the team.
SAFA Acting CEO Gay Mokoena says they will be meeting with some potential sponsors towards the end of next month as they look at repackaging their NWL offering.
– Report by Velile Mnyandu