Author Topic: Women‘s football in SA tackling tough obstacles  (Read 1176 times)

Offline David

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Women‘s football in SA tackling tough obstacles
« on: March 14, 2007, 10:19:33 AM »
SOUTH African women‘s soccer is not given the recognition it deserves by authorities, a Port Elizabeth women‘s football club owner says.

Nomalungelo Mooi, a former Banyana Banyana coach, is the owner and assistant coach of City Lads women‘s football club, based in New Brighton.

“We joined the boys in 1998 and at the time I was the secretary of the men‘s club,” Mooi said.

“I decided to recruit girls because I felt that women‘s soccer was starting to develop.”

A teacher by profession, Mooi was introduced to women‘s soccer when she was responsible for sport at Nkululeko High School in Uitenhage in 1995.

“There was no coach at the school and I would get people to assist and I would be there to motivate the boys.

“We played and won the KFC competition in Johannesburg that year and that is when my love for coaching developed.”

“I met a lot of coaches and I coached under-12 and under-14 teams. I attended coaching courses and sometimes I was the only female coach there,” Mooi said.

In 1998, Banyana Banyana management offered her the post as coach for the national team.

“At first I was not sure I could do it and I questioned my experience but they wanted a female coach for the squad and eventually I took the two-year contract, and the experience was worthwhile.”

That, she said, came in handy when she was coaching the City Lads women‘s club.

“I recruited girls from schools and around the townships. We currently have 23 girls on the senior team and we also have a development team, which is at times a feeder to the seniors.”

Last year Mooi stepped down as the main coach to focus on the management of the team.

The team, which is currently ranked first in the Vodacom League in the region, has been a stepping stone for some to get to the national squad.

Two City Lads players Phakama Duru, 22, and Nomaxabiso Manto, 19, played for the national team in the Africa Qualifiers Cup – a qualifying pool for the World Cup – in Angola in January.

“The girls are very passionate about the game even though they do not get paid for it and sometimes they experience discouraging setbacks.”

Mooi said one of the players was recruited for the under-19 national team in 1999 and she played well, but later missed the Banyana Banyana selection because team coaches said she was too short.

She said even though the team played well, they sometimes lost points when they could not afford to go and play outside Port Elizabeth.

“Last year we received support from the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality but this year they removed the grant.

“It becomes difficult to go and play in other places,” Mooi said.