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The Federation of International Football Association (FIFA) have send the Sports Ground Safety Authority (SGSA) to inspect the national stadium of all the Council of Southern African Football Association (COSAFA) membership. The purpose of this exercise is to advice the COSAFA membership on general safety management. “The main purpose of this initiative is to give advice on the safety management in the stadium”; said Peter Weymes.

 

According to the safety expert; the safety issue starts from the point all the stakeholders leave home until they come back. He also highlighted that safety touches many aspects in the implementation of an event. Waynes made an example of ticketing which he stated that it is also important in as far as safety is concerned. “Ticketing is one of the important issues as the is a need to understand that it is pointless to arrive at the stadium without a ticket”; Weymes said. He also emphasised that it must be ensured that the only fans to enter the stadium must be those with tickets and they must be as per the stadium capacity.

Another important safety issue is the approach towards safety during an event. “How we approach to safety is key thus it is communication is very important”; Peter Weymes said. It is for this matter that contingency plans must be in place when it come to stadium safety. The next stop for this initiative is Zambia. Other countries that have been visited are Mozambique, Angola and Malawi just to mention some of them.

The Senior Men’s National Team (Sihlangu SeMnikati) has begun the training camp in preparation of the upcoming TOTAL  AFCON Qualifier match to be played in Tunisia on Saturday, 23rd March 2018. All the locally based players are in camp whilst the internationals are expected to join camp on the 17th and 18th March 2018.

The spirit is very high and the players are already bonding very well with the Head Coach Kostadin Papic, his technical staff and amongst themselves. This training camp will end after the international match against Tunisia.

The Senior Men’s National Team (Sihlangu SeMnikati) Head Coach, Kostadin Papic has named 30 players for the upcoming full- time training camp which will commence on Wednesday, 6th March 2019 at the Technical Centre in Lobamba as the preparations for the TOTAL AFCON Qualifier Match against against Tunisia to be played in Tunis on Saturday, 23rd March 2019 starts. There kick –off for this official international match is 1900 hrs 97:00 pm.) These players include the five international players that are based in the Republic of South Africa who are expected to join the rest of the players either on Sunday, 17th or Monday, 18th March 2019 when the international FIFA week begins. The players are as follows: Shabalala Khanyakwezwe (Mbabane Highlanders FC), Ginindza Sandile (Mbombela United FC), Msibi Phephisani (Royal Leopards FC), Mkhonta Lindo (Young Buffaloes FC), Machado Jose (Manzini Wanderers FC), Mkhweli Sanele (TS Sporting FC), Motsa Mthunzi (Moneni Pirates FC), Ndaba Ndumiso ( Mbabane Swallows FC), Dlamini Machawe (Royal Leopards FC), Ndzabandzaba Siboniso (Mbababe Swallows FC), Mamba Siboniso (Young Buffaloes FC), Dlamini Banele (Green Mamba FC), Dlamini Vusi (Mbabane Highlanders FC), Ngwenya Siboniso (Young Buffaloes FC), Mkhonta Mxolisi (Green Mamba FC), Matsenjwa Lindani (Young Buffaloes FC), Shabangu Wandile (Young Buffaloes FC), Shiba Muhle (Manzini Sundowns FC), Nhleko Wandile (Manzini Sea Birds FC), Tsabedze Muzi (Manzini Sea Birds), Ndlovu Njabulo (Mbabane Swallows FC), Sikhonze Banele (Polokwane City FC), Manyisa Leon (Vovovo FC), Sithole Menzi (Mbabane Highlanders FC),Ndzabandzaba Banele (Mbombela United FC),Gamedze Sandile (Young Buffaloes FC), Figereido Justice (Maritzburg United FC) and Dlamini Phinda (Green Mamba FC).

The Eswatini Bank Managing Director (MD) Zakhele  Lukhele has urged the football teams who will be competing in the 2019 ESwatini Bank Solo Inje to display quality football. “If all teams give it their all to become champions, then football fans will watch competitive and quality football, and at the end football will be the winner. I would like to urge all participating teams to do their best to be champions”; said Lukhele during the official launch of the U20 Eswatini Bank Cup.

This year’s sponsorship package is E240 000.00 with the champions getting E45 000.00. This shows a E20 000.00 increase from the previous edition.

The Eswatini Football association (EFA) through the Vice President Comfort Shongwe has eulogized the Eswatini Bank on her role in the development of football in the country. “As EFA and football family, we sincerely express our gratitude to Eswatini Bank for her investment in the development of football in the country as this in in line with the EFA’s strategic plan”; Shongwe said. He also emphasized that the development aspect of the game is very much key for the future of the chief sport in the world.

The sponsorship of the 2018/19 Eswatini Bank Cup has increased by E3 000 000.00 from the previous edition. This was revealed by the Managing Director (MD) of the Eswatini Bank, Mr. Zakhele Lukhele during the 16th edition of this competition in an event held at the spacious Royal Swazi Spa Convention Centre. “This year’s sponsorship is E2.9 Million which shows an increments of about E300 000.00 from the previous edition.”; Lukhele said. The champions of the main competition are E1.1 Million plus a ticket to participate in the next edition of the TOTAL CAF Confederations Cup. The runners up will get E500 00.00 whilst the semi-finalist will pocket E125 000.00. This edition’s coach of the tournament will get E10 000.00.

Like the previous edition; there will be a women’s football tournament which has a sponsorship of E150 000.00. This year’s sponsorship will also be completed by an U20 competition. “It’s a family affair competition as the sponsorship package includes the men, women and the development aspects of football”; Lukhele said. The bank with a heart didn’t omit the fans in as far as this competition is concerned as there are numerous fan engagement initiatives that are attached to this tournament.

Solo inje!!!

The Honourable Minister of Sports, Arts and Youth Affairs, Honourable Harris Bulunga has stated that the Eswatini Bank Cup as not an ordinary tournament. “The Eswatini Bank Cup is not an ordinary tournament as it brings best football memories of our football”; said Bulunga. He was speaking during the official launch of the 2018/19 Eswatini Bank Cup which is a knockout competition that guarantees the Champions a cheque of E1.1 M and a ticket to compete in the TOTAL CAF Confederations Cup.

He also acknowledged the bank with a heart for investing in football over the years which has immensely contributed towards football development in the country. “On behalf of His Majesty’s Government; I would like to acknowledge Eswatini Bank for an improved sponsorship regardless of the trying economic status in the country of which this must motivate the participating teams and for her role towards football development in the country over the years”; Bulunga said. He also emphasised the importance of consistence sponsorships in order to achieve the goal of fully professionalizing the game of football in the country.

The Honourable Minister who is also a former football player and coach himself urged all stakeholders to apply the spirit of fair play during this competition so as to not tarnish the image of football and the sponsor. “Let’s not tarnish the image of the game and the sponsor by accepting the results as they come”; the Honourable Minister said. Finally he urged the nation to support the bank in all its promotional initiatives.    

The Eswatini Football Association (EFA) through the President, Mr. Adam Mthethwa has expressed her candid gratitude to the Eswatini Bank for the investment towards football development in the country. “This is now one of the traditional competition, which we know historically has always connected the bridge between Regional football and National football”, Mthethwa said. The EFA President also highlighted that as a return on investment amongst other thigs; the football association has promised that the football family will protect and preserve the exceptional viewpoint of the Eswatini Bank.

The local football mother body also attributed the increment of women playing the beautiful game to the investment by the bank with a heart. “We therefore together with the women folk extend our greatest gratitude to Eswatini bank”; Mthethwa said.  He also extended the football association’s acknowledgement to the Government for her role towards the development of football in the country. “The EFA also salutes the Government of the Kingdom of Eswatini through the Ministry of Sports, Culture and Youth Affairs for nurturing and enabling an environment that allows practice of football and her commitment to improve the performance of our teams locally and internationally.

Sihlangu SeMnikati Head coach Kostadic Papic has asked all the senior men’s national team to support the nation’s pride. The vast experienced gaffer made this plea when addressing the media during the press conference at the Sigwaca House in Mbabane. “I plea to all stakeholders to support the national team as we all have a collective goal for the team”’ Papic said.

The optimistic coach also highlighted that his main mandate is to shock the African continent by getting a positive result against Tunisia in an AFCON Qualifier match to be played in Tunisia in March. “We have nothing to lose against against Tunisia but we will be playing for a positive result as we won’t be happy even if we can get a draw let alone to loose even by a small margin”, he said.

However; he did highlight that this will not be an easy game as the Tunisians are a very competitive side that play good football and may be they have tactically superior players but he is prepared to work with the available players for Sihlangu who will be at their best come selection time. “The Tunisian side has competed even at world cup finals and the AFCON Final of which it is and indication that they are a very good national team; but in football, it’s eleven players each side of which anything is possible”; Papic said. The door is still open for all payers for them to convince the coach to be part of the squad the will make the trip to Tunisia as he has already watched some of them in action during local competitions.

The Eswatini Football Association’s (EFA’s) Technical Director, Bhekisisa Mkhonta is in Cairo, Egypt in attendance of the CAF’s Memberships Technical Directors’ Seminar that is held in Cairo, Egypt. This seminar commenced on the 22nd with the last day to be the 24th January 2019.

Participants of this course are equipped with the right tools to develop coaching and grassroots football. Some of the topics to be covered in this seminar include; the role of the Technical Director, organization of technical development department, coaching convention, FIFA forward application and plan amongst others.

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