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Ed Markey once said “Education is not only a ladder of opportunity, but is also an investment in our future”. This is exactly what FIFA is doing to the participants of the FIFA MA Physical Fitness Coaching Course that is currently underway at the Technical Centre in Lobamba. It is expected that after this course, the participants will have benefited from this course and also they will use the acquired knowledge in the development of football in the country.

This course was officially opened by the Eswatini Football Association’s (EFA’s) Vice President Mr. Peter Simelane who acknowledged FIFA for her role in the development of football in the country. “FIFA has done a lot for the country in as far as football development is concerned and as a football association; we very much acknowledge the world’s football governing body”; Simelane said. He highlighted that FIFA is not only facilitating football courses in the country; but is also developing football infrastructure thus contributing to the development of the country.

To the twenty-nine (29) participants; he highlighted to them that they must concentrate and acquire as much information as possible as the FIFA Instructor; Dr. Pradip Dutta is a vastly experienced and highly educated person. “To the participants; your level of concentration must be at the highest and also you must get as much information as possible from the FIFA Instructors as he is a highly qualified and experienced professional”; Simelane said.

The FIFA Instructor acknowledged the EFA for the warm hospitality since his arrival in the country and he is also looking forward to a successful course that will benefit the development of football in the country. This course will end on Friday after the closing ceremony that is scheduled for 1400hrs (2:00pm) local time.

The Eswatini Football Association (EFA) has allocated E1.2 Million for all her member association. “The EFA has allocated E1.2 Million grant to be shared by all the 8 member associations under its auspice”; said the President of the EFA during the Ordinary General Assemble the was held on Sunday at the Sibane Hotel in Ezulwini. These member associations are the 4 Regional Associations, Premier League of Eswatini, Women Football Association, Coaches Association and the Referees Association. “This money will be distributed in varying amounts, depending on the nature of the business, to the various members of the football association”; Mthethwa said. According to the EFA President, the members will receive this grant in 2 equal parts; in February and in August of every year. “The first portion of 2019 has already been distributed to the members, with the second portion coming in August”; Mthethwa said.

The Eswatini Football association will continue helping clubs that will be competing in the CAF interclub competition. This was disclosed by the General Secretary (GS) of the Eswatini Football association (EFA), Mr Frederick Mngomezulu during the Ordinary General Assembly that was held on Sunday at the Sibane Hotel in Ezulwini. “The EFA in its 2019 and 2020 budget presented, it has allocated an amount of E500 000.00 towards the assistance of the clubs”, said the General Secretary (GS) of the EFA Mr. Frederick Mngomezulu. He clarified that the clubs will not be given the amount in cash, but items relating to the competitions will be financed for them until the amount is exhausted. “For an example, as has been the case before, the EFA will sometimes finance air tickets for match officials or even the flight/transport costs of the club, being items whose responsibility lies with the clubs”; Mngomezulu said.

With reference to the vehicle disposal which was part of the financial reporting of the EFA; the General Secretary (GS) of the football association, Mr. Frederick Mngomezulu has clarified the subject on the vehicle disposal. “The bus was not a subject of disposal at any point of the presentation. The bus was only featured in the justification of maintenance cost of vehicles of the organization in respect of its service and fuel, for which it was stated that it is a welcomed expenditure that will be maintained”; said Mngomezulu. He also stated that the bus has bought a huge saving on the transport costs as against the hiring of transport for all travels of national teams. “Even if the cost  of maintaining it was high, it was still cheaper compared to hiring of buses. As is, the bus is still in excellent working condition for some years to come”; Mngomezulu concluded.

 

As per the Confederation of African Football’s (CAF’s) club licensing; there are minimum standards that must be met in football for the sake of developing the sport. Indeed there is light at the end of the tunnel as a total of 33 Sports Medicine and 11 Administration Instructorship candidates graduated on Monday; 10th June 2019 at Sibane Hotel.

This event was graced by the Honourable Minister of Sports, Culture and Youth Affairs, Minister Harries Bulunga; Executive of the Eswatini Football Association (EFA) and Senior Government Officials to mention just a few.

“I believe that the graduates will contribute a lot towards football development”; said Bulunga. These shows the vital tasks that the graduates are expected to execute in the football industry. The Honourable Minister stated that these courses will address the gap that existed for a long time in football of which he tasks the EFA to have more of such courses in order to develop the sport. “Professionalization of the game is in line with the country’s vision of which education can enhance the fulfilment of it”; Bulunga said. It is for this reason that the Honourable Minister reminded the graduates that; learning is never an event as they have to keep on upgrading themselves.

The Eswatini Football Association (EFA) is very much committed towards football development in this country. This was highlighted by the President of EFA Mr. Adam Mthethwa during the graduation ceremony of the Sports Medicine and Administration Instructorship candidates. “Honourable Minister; this is one way in-which the EFA is developing football in the country”; Mthethwa said. The President also stated that as EFA they hope the graduates will assist the football association in achieving its mandate.

These words from the EFA President were echoed by the Vice President of the football association Dr. Comfort Shongwe who stated that the football association is trying very hard to develop football in the country as there is a lot of things that need to be done. “There are things that need to be given attention for the sake of developing football”; Shongwe said. He highlighted the need of regular testing of players and also put in place a policy to enhance the safety of players more especially when it comes to the issues of having a fully equipped medical bag. He also motivated the graduates to fully commit themselves to all the tasks that they will be given to them in future. “When given a task; do your best”. He concluded.

The President of the Eswatini Football Association (EFA) Mr. Adam Mthethwa, Vice President Mr. Peter Simelane and the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Mr. Frederick Mngomezulu are in Paris, France attending of the FIFA Congress, hosted on the 5th June 2019, which was preceded by a CAF Assembly on the 4th June 2019 to discuss some of the items of the FIFA Congress.

 

This is a statutory Ordinary Congress that is hosted by FIFA on an annual basis, where global football governance, administration and development activities are discussed. As part of the agenda, the congress will also discuss the Activity Report of FIFA and Financial Reports of FIFA, including any possible amendments to the FIFA Statutes, as well as items tabled for discussion by the Congress.

 

 The 2019 FIFA Congress is also expected to elect the President of FIFA, where the incumbent President, Mr. Gianni Infantino is the sole candidate.  

On another note; the same delegates of EFA currently attending the FIFA Congress are expected to upon conclusion of the FIFA Congress, also join with Football Officials overseeing women football in FIFA’s respective Member Associations globally, to attend the FIFA Women Football Convention, also scheduled to be hosted in Paris from the 6th to 7th June 2019. The Chairman of the Women Football Association, Mr. Sonnyboy Mabuza, by virtue of his position within the EFA, will attend this very first FIFA Women Football Convention. This convention will discuss various women football development issues. The EFA delegates are expected to return on the 9th June 2019.

On his capacity as being the Honouree Vice President of the Council of South African Football Association (COSAFA); the Eswatini Football Association’s (EFA’s) President Mr. Adam Mthethwa took his valuable time and met the Senior Men’s National Team (Sihlangu) at the Garden Court Marine Parade in Durban yesterday after lunch. Sihlangu is currently in Durban competing in the COSAFA Senior Challenge and the national team’s fate in this year’s edition depends on the outcome of today’s group A final match between Mauritius and Comoros.

“So far you have played two games in the 2019 COSAFA Senior Challenge which both of them ended with a draw; but the Eswatini nation is still fully behind you”; Mthethwa said. The EFA President also urged the national team to soldier on and not lose hope as they are not yet out in the tournament and if that’s the case; there are still other competitions that they can use to redeem themselves. Finally he wished the national team the very best of luck in the future.

The Senior Men’s National Team Head Coach, Kostadin Papic is pleased with the performance of his players thus far, which is why he still believes in them. “I am pleased with my players and I believe in them”; said the Serbian born coach. Papic highlighted that the players are improving in their play and they did very well in the two matches that they have played in the on-going COSAFA Senior Challenge.

His words were echoed by some Sihlangu fans through the Eswatini Football Association’s facebook page where some of them expressed a lot of delight towards the performance of the national team. Having said that; both the Head Coach and the fans did show their concerns on the defensive errors made by the national team in recent matches. In this year’s COSAFA Senior Challenge Sihlangu has scored 2 goals and also considered the same number of goals. “We are able to score goals which is good; but what is strange is that we also concede goals cheaply for that matter”; Papic said. The conceded goals have put the national team’s future in the 2019 COSAFA Senior Challenge in a limbo as Sihlangu’s progress in the competition relies much on the results of today’s match between Mauritius and Comoros.

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