THE education and sport development department in conjunction with North West-based PSL club, Platinum Stars held soccer clinics recently at Moruleng, Rustenburg.
MEC for education and sport development, Sello Lehari said the program will benefit young soccer players especially in rural areas.
“We organised these soccer clinics to assist our young players. We also brought in former professional players to impart their knowledge. The new soccer programs are not just fun for the children. They are also fun for those parents who are coaching.
“Coaches no longer need to concentrate on a complete coaching session and a match. They also need to encourage their players because the technical advisor makes sure that the players are doing the activities properly, and ensures that the fundamental skills are being learned,” Lehari said.
He added that North West province has produced many soccer players and they will continue with that trade. Lehari further said this was an opportunity for young players to learn techniques and tactical response from this mentorship.
“We have established a partnership with Platinum Stars. Our main objective is to see many players from grassroots playing for Platinum Stars. We have abundance of talents that need exposure. Several match-related activities will aid in their knowledge of the game.
“Our department values soccer active and believes the development of physical literacy is essential. The sport participation also assists children to stimulate their minds,” he said.
Platinum Stars chairman, Cliff Ramoroa said they want to rope in many players from the province in their academy program.
“We focus mainly on positive impact and maximize youth player development across the province. Our academy values individual development of elite players over winning trophies and titles. We want our academy to set the standard for elite environments for youth soccer clubs nationwide,” Ramoroa said.
Former Kaizer Chiefs defender, Jacob Tshisevhe said “It is important to groom the young players at the tender age. They need to learn discipline, dedication and determination. The mentality of our players needs to be improved. Most players fail when they go abroad. South African players have abundance of skills and talents, yet we continue to fail compare to other countries.
“Most European players are not skilful, but their work-rate is out of this world. We need to have more tournaments like Maize Cup through and not a once-off thing. The tournament will improve and develop the young players if used efficiently.”
Soccer Development coach, Goodman Cumming shared the same sentiments. He said they experience challenges in soccer developments especially rural areas.
“Many coaches are reluctant to come to far-flung areas and nurture youngsters. Lack of resources is sometimes hindering the progress of many academies. We need to go to schools and start to develop players from that phase. Youngsters need to work with their role models and get inspired. We believe soccer clinics will benefit most of them and set a platform for them to expand,” Cumming said.