Minister of Sport and Recreation, Tokozile Xasa has congratulated Banyana Banyana for qualifying for the 2019 World Cup and for all their accolades in Africa.

They won the 2018 Coach and Player of the Year awards. The minister says Banyana are breaking barriers, not only in football, but also with gender inequality in South Africa.

Xasa was speaking at a breakfast she hosted in Cape Town for Banyana Banyana ahead of their international friendlies against Sweden and the Netherlands in the coming week.

She says her department is determined to support women’s football in the country and they will launch Banyana Friday’s when the team leave for the World Cup in June in France.

“As the Department of Sport and Recreation in the next three years we will make about R5 million towards the women’s Premier Soccer League and we want to encourage corporate South Africa to support all women sports,” says Xasa.

Banyana coach, Desiree Ellis, says the success of her team has always been about team work which includes everyone, even the bus driver.

“When we receive an award it’s on behalf of the whole team because without everyone else it’s not possible and we call it teamwork is ‘dreamwork.’ One girl, one team and together we are strong. We have a fantastic year ahead of us culminating in the World Cup. We want to make sure when we leave that World Cup, we are not forgotten,” says Ellis.

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