Katlehong Local Football Association (KLFA) held a special ceremony to award hard working coaches on September 10.
KLFA forms part of the South African Football Association (Safa).
The award ceremony where four coaches – Lehlohonolo Mokatane (Triple S FC), Collen Phiri (United FC), Aaron Kele (United Partners FC) and Obed Lebepe (Zone Three FC) – were awarded certificates took place at Tshabalala Primary School in Katlehong.
Josiah Cindi, the treasurer of KLFA, who was the programme director, said despite the challenges, the four coaches still did their best in the development of football in the township.
“They are not only owners, managers and coaches of one team.
“They are in charge of more than one team, including the u11s, u-13s, u-15s, u-17 and super division.
“We had to do something to encourage them to continue doing the good work they are doing and at the same time motivate other coaches to follow in these four’s footsteps,” said Cindi.
“There is no way their good work would go unnoticed.”
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The four coaches have been praised for their undying commitment and contribution to making the association what it is.
Lebepe, who wasn’t able to attend the ceremony due to other commitments, had his super division team playing in the SAB League and do well on the day.
During the ceremony, John ‘Bull’ Sibeko, a former Witbank Aces player and a current facilitator of Safa coaching courses, took the opportunity to address issues that hinder the development of local football. Sibeko was also the speaker of the day.
“Our duty as coaches working with young players is to produce players who are going to put our country’s football on top in the African continent.
“With the kind of football displayed by our national team against Libya recently, it is impossible,” said Sibeko.
“The reason our national team played the way they did against Libya is that our national team players lacked the basics of football at their development stages.
“So we can’t blame the national team coaches because they are working with material that is supposed to be ready.
“We are to blame for such mistakes where players do not know what to do in front of the goal line.
“We as coaches working with young players need to correct that at a grassroots level.”
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Sibeko also runs a sport development programme in Hillbrow.
Coaches who attended the ceremony were encouraged to take Safa Level C and D coaching courses.
Phiri was excited about the certificate stating he will make good use of the opportunity to upgrade his football knowledge.
“I have a Modified Sport Coaching certificate (equivalent to SAFA Level D) obtained in 2015.
“Now I am going to do Level C. I want to make good use of the fact that Level C and D coaching courses are available,” said an excited Phiri.
When asked how his teams are doing in the KLFA, Phiri answered: “So far so good. My u-13 team is in position three, sharing points with the teams in position one and two but placed in position three because of goal difference.
“My u-15s are currently number six while u-17s are sitting in the fourth position,” concludes Phiri.