Following Bafana Bafana’s exit from the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations, South Africa’s Minister of Sport and Recreation Fikile Mbalula has encouraged the South African Football Association (SAFA) to take more of a scientific approach to the game.
The Minister says that South Africa has an abundance of talent that needs to be nurtured and groomed properly from a tender age, through a development structure.
“We will solicit expert and scientific advice from leading thinkers in the field of sports sciences with a view to examine in a holistic sense, the size, shape and strengths of our football players, nutrition, access to modern technology, sports psychology, early childhood preparations for high performance sports, and so on.
“We will, as we have started, encourage the cross-pollination of ideas between SAFA and the highly successful codes in continental and global competitions such as rugby and cricket.
“We must as a matter of urgency convene a workshop with a view to ensuring that all come into addressing these issue in a directed and focused manner, taking into account peculiarities, the culture and discipline of each sporting code.
“We will ask the recently established SAFA Development Agency to present its plans and interventions to the first Minister and Members of Executive Councils Meeting (MINMEC) in 2013 with a view to ensuring that the Provinces do play a leading role in addressing the challenges facing football and sport in general in our country,” the Minister stated.