Why African Players Should Stop Emulating European And South American Footballers
African players, especially those who are still playing their football in Africa must stop idolising European and South American footballers. Here’s why.
Many PSL players idolise their European and South American counterparts, as is the case with Mamelodi Sundowns star Khama Billiat, who models his game around Cristiano Ronaldo. He even celebrates the way the Portuguese star does.
During the Nelson Mandela exhibition game between Mamelodi Sundowns and Barcelona, Billiat, Percy Tau and Themba Zwane didn’t come to the party.
These are the same players who played in front of capacity crowds, a CAF Champions League final and in the prestigious FIFA Club World Cup. One could easily say that against Barcelona, they suffered stage fright.
For example, both Tau and Billiat never had problems with their first touches before but on the night, it seemed as though nothing was not coming together for Billiat and co.
My point is that on the field of play, we can match big name players pound for pound even though they may look superior on paper.
The only thing we need to do is to apply our own African mentality and stop wanting to be like them. During the days of the Vodacom challenge Cup, local players were used to playing against the likes of Manchester United, Manchester City and Spurs.
Playing in tournaments such as the Vodacom Challenge helped normalise our players when playing against these European giants and even managed to beat them on a couple of occasions.
What do you think, should local players emulate top European talents or should they concentrate on their own style of play?
*This article was written by a Soccer Laduma reader and reflects their opinion, not that of Soccer Laduma.