Football is a beautiful game that unites people of all walks of life. This will be the case in the Manzini South constituency, come December holidays as football players and fans will be enjoying the beautiful game with their loved ones. Tikhuba Traders which sells agricultural products through the Manzini south Member of Parliament (MP) Owen Nxumalo who is also the Minister of Public Service sponsored a football tournament that will be staged during the December holidays. Present during this event were 3 Cabinet Ministers. These were, Minister David Ngcamphalala, Minister Christopher Gamedze, Minister Owen Nxumalo; President of the National Football Association of Swaziland (NFAS), Senator Adam Mthethwa; Chairman of the Premier league of Swaziland (PLS), Mr. Victor Gamedze; Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the NFAS, Frederick Mngomezulu and the Director of Khuba Traders, Mr. Bradley Young just to mention a few.
When presenting the E30, 000.00 cheques, the Director of Khuba Traders expressed his company’s excitement of being involved in football development over the past years as they have been sponsoring this competition for the past 3 years. “As Khuba Traders, we are proud and also excited to be involved in football development in the country and more especially at grassroots level”, he said. The Director also highlighted that it is on of the dreams for his organization to invest in a similar fashion in the other parts of the country as football plays a significant role in the socio- development of the country.
When reacting to the sponsorship, the Cabinet Ministers acknowledged Khuba Traders for enhancing His Majesty’s Government’s effort in developing sports in the country. Minister Christopher Gamedze appreciated the sponsor for this corporate social investment (CSI) initiative as it plays a great role in the development of football in the country. “We are very much happy with this CSI initiative by Khuba Traders as it develops football from grassroots level”, he said. Minister David Ngcamphalala also thanked the sponsor for this investment into sports and also thanked Minister Owen Nxumalo for getting this sponsorship on behalf of the Manzini South Constituency. “We thank the sponsor for this investment into sports as it will also enhance the fight against crime in the Manzini south Constituency thus developing the country”, he said.
The PLS Chairman also expressed his appreciation on behalf of the football family to the sponsor. “As football family, we thank Khuba Traders for this sponsorship as it is a sign of love to the sport than the marketing element of the sponsorship”, he said. He also acknowledged Minister Owen Nxumalo’s effort in convincing the sponsor to invest in the Manzini South Constituency through football as it wasn’t a stroll in the park. The MP of the Manzini South Constituency also thanked the sponsor for investing in this competition for the past 3 years.
The National Football Association of Swaziland (NFAS) with respect to the participation of CAF Suspended Referees; Thulani Sibandze and Petros Mbingo; hereby states the referees in question were given a green light to participate in the fitness tests primarily to keep them in good physical/ fitness shape for their resumption of duties once their suspension has elapsed.
The very referees; in spite of their suspension; were allowed to participate in a fitness test earlier; in Maputo, Mozambique together with FIFA Accredited referees that could not be successful in the initial fitness test hosted in Swaziland at the instance of the FIFA MA Refereeing Course in August 2017; particularly given that they needed to have passed a fitness test for any possible international registration and they are still members or a part of the current 2017 FIFA Lists of Referees and Assistant Referees. All of these have been done in consultation with the pertinent authorities.
Further note that the suspended referees; Thulani Sibandze and Petros Mbingo are now eligible to officiate in domestic competitions, subject to them passing the statutory fitness tests conducted under the authority of the Referees Committee within the NFAS. This therefore implies that if they participated and passed the recently hosted fitness tests of the 12th November 2017, they are immediately available for consideration for refereeing responsibilities under the auspices of the NFAS. This decision has been done in communication with the relevant authorities on their issues.
Local Women Referee, Letticia Viana was selected by CAF to be part of a panel of CAF Elite Women Referees that participated in a CAF Elite Referees Course that was hosted in Morocco from the 26th October 2017 to the 1st November 2017. The Elite course which comprised both the technical and fitness aspect carried certification for all successful participants. Our local women referee successfully participated in the course. At this instance, the NFAS hereby seizes this prospect to congratulate the referee on her recognition to participate in an Elite Refereeing Course, recognition which will open opportunities for women refereeing in the country and a great motivation to current aspiring women referees.
The National Football Association of Swaziland (NFAS) would like to inform the public and all stakeholders that it has since decided to release the players from camp back to their football clubs this Monday, 13th November 2017, following the none success in the acquisition of an international friendly match within this FIFA Week, despite the fact that it had already tentatively secured two matches even before the start of the FIFA Week.
Efforts to have other alternative matches or at least a practice match proved cumbersome, especially in the light of the fact that the withdrawals or changes of the initial planned matches happened when the period was too short. Most of the countries approached later decried their budgetary constraints to honour the matches, whilst other proved to be expensive to undertake on the current limited budget. The NFAS still has to oversee the preparation and participation of the U20 national team in the U20 COSAFA Competition in Zambia next month; oversee the preparation and participation of the Women national team for the AFCON Ghana 2018 Qualifier; and further preparations of the very same senior national team (Sihlangu SeMnikati) ahead of Tunisia match.
The U20 Men’s National Team is back home after visiting Lesotho for 2 international friendly matches against their counterparts from the mountainous Kingdom of Lesotho. The local side won both matches with the first one being played on Saturday, 11th November 2017 whereby they won by 3-0 and on the second match that was played on Sunday, 12th November 2017 the lads won by 2-0. These international friendly matches are part of the preparations for the upcoming U20 COSAFA Youth Championships to be held in Kitwe; Zambia as from the 6th -16th November 2017.
Upon their arrival at the Technical Centre in Lobamba; the Captain, Junior Magagula of the national team highlighted that they got a good practice from the Basotho in both matches as they were very competitive as a result they had to work hard for their victories. “They gave us a good practice as we had to work very hard for the results”, he said. When quizzed about their opponents in the group stages of the COSAFA U 20 Youth Championship; the skipper stated that it is a tough group however; they will work very hard in order to play very well in the competition. “It is a tough group however; with hard work and support from the nation, we can play very well in the competition”, he said.
His words were also stated by the U20 Men’s National Team Coach, Mandla “Stofu” Dlamini who also noted that both matches were very competitive as they learnt a lot from the Basotho U20 National Team. “They were a tough opposition on both matches as they gave us a good practice whereby we learnt a lot from them as a team”, he said. The coach also highlighted his happiness in which the lads played well and according to the game plan.
The national team players were given a very short break as they expected to be back in full time training camp on Wednesday, 15th November 2017.
The National Football Association of Swaziland (NFAS) held a Referees Fitness Test on Sunday, 13th November 2017 at the Somhlolo National Stadium in Lobamba. The targeted referees were those who officiates in the elite football; however regional referees were also accommodated. Among the referees, 4 of them were female which is an indication that refereeing is for both genders.
According to the Chairman of the Swaziland Referees Committee, the NFAS was very happy about the overall event. “The NFAS is very much excited about the whole event as the turnout was very much encouraging”, he said. When quizzed about the availability of human resources in as far as refereeing is concerned; he stated that the presence of young referees was an indication of growth in refereeing as they are also expecting more referees in January as they are currently busy with their refereeing studies. This additional referee will play a significant role considering the fact that there are 14 MTN Premier League teams and 12 National First Division Team which implies more number of matches than the previous football season.
The NFAS Refereeing Instructor, Mr. Dumisani Hadebe highlighted that a total of 55 referees participated in this exercise where-by 5 of them were not able to make it however; they will have another opportunity to retest after 6 week”, he said. Among the participating referees was the experienced referee who is also the Secretary of the Swaziland National Referees Association (SNRA); Mr. Simanga Nhleko who highlighted about the importance of this exercise. “This is a vital exercise as we are expected to stay fit all the times in order to match the physical fitness demands of refereeing”, he said.
This referees physical fitness test follows the one that was made before the commencement of the 2017/2018 football season.
On another note, the U20 Men’s National Team is also currently in camp at Caritas in Manzini; preparing for the upcoming COSAFA U20 Youth Championships to be held in Kitwe, Zambia from the 6th -16th December 2017. As part of these preparations, the U20 national team will leave the country by road this evening for an international friendly match against Lesotho U20s which will be played in Maseru. The travelling delegation includes 5 officials plus 20 players and heading the delegation is Mr. Sonnyboy Mabuza an Executive Member. The team is expected back home on Monday, 13th November 2017. This is just part of the preparation for the COSAFA U20 Competition, whose draw is already been done where the country is in Group A with the host Zambia; the Guest team; Uganda and Malawi, which looks to be a tough group, hence the need to have intensive preparations in the next two weeks to participate well. The list of players is as follows:
The National Football Association of Swaziland (NFAS) will on Saturday, 4th November 2017 host the NFAS License D Coaching Course and it will run for 5 weekends. This course is mainly targeted to coaches who are practising in Super League teams and prospective coaches as this is an entry license in the coaching profession. The NFAS License D Coaching Course is in line with the requirements of Club Licensing, where even youth and regional teams must be trained by qualified football coaches. Amongst the topics of this course is psychology, football theory, team management and physiology just to mention a few. This course will be hosted in the following places:
In all these places, classes will commence at 0800hrs (8:00 am).
The National Football Association of Swaziland (NFAS) and the Football family expresses congratulatory note to Mbabane Swallows FC’s international striker; Sabelo “Sikhali” Ndzinisa for being nominated by CAF for the African Player of the Year based in Africa. This is a symbol of growth in the standard of football in the country and also, this nomination promotes our football brand and the country. The NFAS wishes him the best of luck.