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The Zebras call on the nation to rally behind the team

GABORONE, Botswana, February 19, 2021/ — Botswana national team players, The Zebras, have called on the entire nation to rally behind the team ahead of their two decisive fixtures between Zimbabwe and Algeria next month (March).

The Zebras have a yearning desire to qualify for the 2022 African Cup of Nations (AFCON). The current crop of Zebras players are harboring dreams of making history by becoming the second generation to reach the finals of AFCON. The first and last time the national team qualified was in 2012.

Speaking prior to their intensive training session in Tlokweng where the team is currently camping, Township Rollers’ hard-tackling defender, Mosha Gaolaolwe said the mood in the camp is high and the integration of old campaigners and new players into the camp is working well, adding that the payers understand the coach’s philosophy and tactics.


“When we first came to camp, the new players struggled to get what the coach wanted from us. We all know what is at stake and we want to qualify for AFCON. It is every player’s dream to represent the country at the highest level and we ask the nation to support them team as we are all Batswana at the end of the day. We all want to see our country being celebrated across the world too. That is the most fulfilling feeling,” said Gaolaolwe.


For his part, Orapa United talisman, Onkabetse Makgantai expressed delight to be back in the national team fold.


“I am happy to be back in the national team. I continue to work hard to impress the technical team and help my country to qualify for this revered cup. Surely, representing the country in major tournaments like this one bring about opportunities of being scouted by international teams. I have ambitions of playing abroad and the national team caps are essential for me. I call on the nation to support The Zebras wholeheartedly,” said Makgantai.


Gaborone United’s (GU) pintsized, Thatayaone Ramatlapeng pleaded and encouraged all the players to stay off social media as some negative commentary may demoralize the team.


“We have a task ahead of us, and it is collecting maximum points that will qualify us for AFCON, we are remarkably close, and we need only positive vibes. I encourage my fellow players to focus on the goal and give it all for Botswana. Though the matches will be played without the fans, I plead with the entire nation to support us. The team needs their undying support as always,” said Ramatlapeng on the sidelines of their training camp in Tlokweng recently.



CAF Presidential Hopeful, Dr. Motsepe Sets Out His Road Map

GABORONE, Botswana, February 25, 2021/ — In exactly 15 days, 54 member associations (MA) of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) comprising Botswana Football Association (BFA) are expected to decide on the future of African football at an elective congress slated for March 12th in Rabat, Morocco.

Already 14 member associations including the BFA have endorsed South African businessman and Mamelodi Sundowns President Dr. Patrice Motsepe as their preferred CAF presidential candidate at the just ended Confederation of Southern Africa Football (COSAFA) General Assembly this past weekend in Johannesburg, South Africa

Today (Thursday, 25 February 2021), Dr. Motsepe announced his roadmap during a 2-hour LIVE media conference in Sandton, Johannesburg (RSA.

Speaking publicly for the first time about his desire to lead African football, Motsepe revealed his 10-points Action Plan should he ascend the CAF presidency next month.

Accompanied by COSAFA President, Philip Chiwanga, South African Football Association (SAFA) President Danny Jordaan, RSA Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture, Nathi Mthethwa and Premier Soccer League (PSL) chairperson, Irvin Khoza in the top table, Motsepe expressed delight at the confidence bestowed on him by these distinguished football titans.

Top on Motsepe’s administration drill will be investing in developing and growing football in each African country and building partnerships and sponsorships with the private sector and other potential partners.

“At the heart of building African football to be the best in the world is investing in the development, growth, global competitiveness and sustainability of football in each African country,” he said adding that, “We will visit each country within 9 to 12 months and we will initiate discussions with the Member Associations’ Presidents and leadership to identify and implement priority development and growth projects and to ensure that football is popular with a growing supporter and TV base in each country and on the African continent and over time around the world.”

Motsepe said there is immediate need to improve the efficiency and professionalism of CAF’s Competitions and its staff.

“We will contribute to improving the efficiency, administration and organization of CAF’s competitions as well as the professionalism and productivity of its staff. We will also put in place medical best practices particularly in the context of Covid-19.”

Furthermore, Motsepe added, “It is also important to significantly increase the prize money of the CAF Africa Cup of Nations and of the top Pan African club competitions. This will contribute to the improvement in the quality of African football, its youth and women’s football academies and infrastructure and increase the African and global fan and TV interest.”

The South African business tycoon also said implementing and adhering to governance and auditing global best practices will guide his presidency.

“We will focus on contributing to building a respected, credible and ethical football governing association in every country in Africa and also focus on contributing to building an equally respected, credible and ethical African continental football governing body – CAF that is transparent and accountable and that implements and adheres to auditing and governance global best practices.”

In his delivery, Motsepe expressed worry at the infrastructure that some CAF members use thus investing in African football infrastructure will be key in his administration.

“We are committed to ensuring that at least one quality national stadium in every country is built, where none currently exists, in accordance with FIFA’s international quality standards and also building at least 200 football pitches.”

Motsepe further assured the media that investing in the youth is the future of African football.

“Building youth football development facilities and infrastructure for boys and girls and promoting school football in as many schools as possible, is important for the growth and long-term success of African football.”

Furthermore, Motsepe said developing and growing women’s football will also be a priority, he outlined that despite the financial, logistical, infrastructure and other challenges, African women’s football shows much promise.

“As was demonstrated during the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France when their technical level and goal scoring abilities indicated that they could hold their own against the best women’s teams in the world. There will be extensive consultation and discussions with women’s football participants and stakeholders and a thorough assessment of the prevailing conditions and proposed reforms for African women’s football will be undertaken.”
Motsepe said Protecting the integrity and professionalising refereeing is also key.

“Refereeing is the cornerstone of football worldwide. The integrity, independence and professionalism of referees is crucial for the credibility and success of football in Africa. The elite refereeing programme jointly developed by CAF and FIFA in 2020 will be rolled out within 6 months. This programme will raise refereeing standards and enable regular and complete assessments of the standard of refereeing in Africa,” said Dr. Motsepe.

Motsepe further noted that during his tenure, VAR will be implemented at all CAF senior competitions.

“Each Member Association participating in international and inter-regional competitions should also invest in a light VAR system. Appropriate training and skills for the video assistant referees will be provided.”

Regarding statutory reforms, he said the administration will initiate discussions and consultations within 3 to 6 months to assess and identify the statutory reforms and changes that are essential to improving and strengthening the administrative, managerial, and operational efficiency of CAF, its Member Associations, and the Regional/Zonal Associations and to implement transparency, accountability, and adherence to auditing and governance global best practices.

In conclusion, Motsepe said partnerships with FIFA and other Continental governing bodies will form part of the strategy for mutual growth of football.
“We are committed to building a mutually respectful and beneficial relationship and partnership with FIFA and with all the other Continental Football governing bodies in the world. These relationships and partnerships will be based on advancing the best interests of Africa, CAF and its Member Associations.”

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