Earlier this year, Supporters Club had the fortune of being contacted by a skilled writer and avid football fan, Molifi Tshabalala, who has written a book called Thoughts of an Ordinary Citizen, which is half about politics and half about football. And now he is back. In light of Bafana Bafana's failure to qualify for Afcon 2017, he seeks to disprove some myths about SA football. The first: that playing in continental competition gives you a better national team...
"When a perception is being peddled repeatedly over time, without anyone challenging its factuality, it becomes a conventional wisdom. For example, a perception that when our clubs fare well in the continental competitions, it helps our national team, known as Bafana Bafana, to qualify for and win major tournaments, such as the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon), has become a conventional wisdom.
"'I want to take you back as far as 1995, when Orlando Pirates won (the CAF Champions League),' said Bafana Bafana coach Ephraim 'Shakes' Mashaba. 'That rubbed off to 1996 when Bafana Bafana won the Afcon,' he added. Looking at an Orlando Pirates squad that had won the competition, only four players made Clive Barker's 1996 squad. Mark Fish played all the matches and Helman Mkhalele started one match and played others from the bench.
"Edward Motale and John Moeti did not feature in the tournament. Yes, the experience that Orlando Pirates players had acquired on the continent did contribute to the 1996 Afcon feat, but this cannot be stated as the fact that when our clubs fare poorly in the continental competitions, it impinges on the national team." – Molifi Tshabalala
What do you think of Molifi's opinion? Do you agree that competing in continental competition actually has very little effect on the national team? Tune in to Supporters Club tomorrow for the next myth Molifi discusses with us.