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My dearest readers ... Now that I have your attention let me mention my intention.  My intention this Tuesday morning is not to be a spoilsport or the bearer of sad news.

My intention is to be as brutally honest as it is humanly possible. From the onset, let me state the blindingly obvious that I am as Swazi as they come. I hold no dual citizenship and have no other country to run to. 

What I write here comes from the heart and I am not apologetic about it. I am patriotic too, born and bred in Eswatini but I am wise enough to know that patriotism is a refuge for scoundrels as one Samuel Jackson rightly articulated many moons ago.

I will not sit and fold arms when I see my country’s national team being turned into a private property by individuals with petty selfish agendas and who have mismanaged our football for donkey years.

After the distasteful events of the past two weeks in the Sihlangu set up which saw the team not being officially announced; dragged to the mountainous Kingdom of Lesotho where it played and lost two preparatory games and then over the weekend, shooed off to Mhlume for a series of friendly games against minnows like Manzini Sea Birds, revived Mhlume Peacemakers and fallen giants Mbabane Highlanders, we have to be worried. Very worried.
What has become of our national team? A ragbag and chaotic camp that would make the Nigerian Big Brother’s House look like, at best, a synagogue or at worst, a Sunday school picnic.

When many other countries around the globe – who know what a national team is – officially announce when their squads are going to camp and who is going to camp, ours is secretly assembled in camp. No word from the Football Association (FA). Instead the team, made up of players who last kicked a ball three months ago, is taken for some preparatory games against minnows Lesotho’s Likuena Likuena where, Lord forbid, they lose two games and fail to even score a single goal.

If we can’t score against Lesotho ranked 146 -12 places below us – then what are the chances of scoring a goal against the number one ranked team in Africa and number 24 in the world?

We have as much a chance of beating Tunisia as Yours Truly being the next Mr. Swaziland!
You can quote me on that one!

But seriously now, it is an indictment on the part of the Eswatini Football Association (EFA) that they cannot simply run a team that plays less than 10 games in a year. The chaos that has reigned supreme at Sihlangu tells a story of the blind leading the blind. I think I have overheard Stevie Wonder tell Ray Charles that what is happening at Sihlangu is akin to Babsy Mlangeni helping Steve Kekana cross the busy Gwamile Street on month end.


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