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“We need a women’s football professional”, that sentence has reverberated  on twitter, newspapers, and various players have echoed the same in interviews, but realistically do we have the financial and resources to introduce one in the current landscape, and everyone seems to drop this massive task solely at SAFA’s doorstep which is a bit disingenuous.

The revenue stream for any professional football player comes from three sources, the club, central contracts from the association and endorsements, sponsors and TV rights deals contribute 95% of the combined revenue.

The WSL (Women’s Super League) players in the English FA salaries range anywhere from R82 000 – R164 000 on the lower spectrum for players who aren’t professional up to around the R576 000 mark for the top earners, normally 30 players that represent England are awarded central contracts and that sit separately from their club contracts. Each of them is given a minimum of R410 000 a year, rising to R493 000 through things such as appearance bonuses, clubs use 40% of their turnover on salaries.

So if we (SA) where to turn pro, utilising the English FA model, a Banyana Banyana player can earn R48 000 a month excluding endorsements,  creating a national tier 1 professional league above the Sasol , the players should earn between R7 000 – R13 000 a month excluding bonuses. Even if we were to cap these amounts, it’s still significant amounts comparing to the sponsorship that women’s football has received in the last 20 years.

The key to set up a fully fledged women’s professional football league is the sole responsibility of the clubs to ensure that they have sustainable business models that will ensure players earn a competitive salary.

How can this be achieved, clubs need to create a product that will be marketable with the view of increasing spectator viewership ensuring that that the game becomes a commodity that draws TV audience which indirectly attracts sponsorships.

Clubs should not solely rely on the SAFA grant alone, be creative, what stops clubs from initiating the following;

  • Approaching Bra-Peters butchery with the view of offering a shirt branding sponsorship.
  • Setting up a media department (Twitter, facebook, Instagram pages), approaching a local community newspaper and setting a partnership to cover the clubs games (Bra-Peters butchery could benefit from the coverage).
  • Register the coach to attain the highest qualification available from SAFA.
  • Set up proper business aligned structures, management committee, technical etc.
  • Formulate policies/constitution etc.
  • Link up or create partnerships with high schools football teams to ensure player recruitment is sustainable.
  • Create a partnership with a university/college to ensure future growth of players, this will create stability for the club and ensure support from parents and the community.
  • Offer opportunities to the community members who yearn to become involved in sports, have someone who’s responsible for amaline, nebench.
  • Discuss with the local municipality or councillor with the view of offering assistance with a first aid course, first aid kit and there’s more they could offer.
  • The club must be imbedded in the community, be involve in campaigns that are created against drugs, crime etc.
  • Create relationships with your fellow clubs in the league, create google maps of you home venue and offer post entertainment (sandwiches, drinks) to your opposition after the game.

Imagine if all SASOL league clubs created these initiatives and more, the game starts being semi-professional, sponsors start seeing the opportunity to invest in the sport and SAFA will surely start seeing the massive opportunity to create a professional league.

LETS STOP COMPLAINING AND SIVUKENI, SIGEZE, SIBANGENE.

SFC