New Era (Windhoek)

Namibia: Shooting From the Hip - Black Africa Sets Benchmark for Beautiful Game

NOT since the days of Lucky Boostander, Dawid Snewe, Rusten Mogane, George Martin, Crooks Casper and Lucky Richter have local football revelers ever witnessed a brilliant display such as that which reigning league champions Black Africa managed in last weekend's league action. It was a marvel and a rare treat to watch them play.

In all honesty, the entertaining football displayed by Black Africa in their league match against Civics will be etched on our collective minds for a long time to come. The technical acumen of Brian Isaacs' fired-up charges, coupled with the unbelievably silky skills of mercurial midfielder Awilo Stephanus and his partner in crime Klaas Blom, undoubtedly provided the action starved local football fans with a glimpse of what is in store for the remainder of this season.

Let us savour those moments, commit them to our mnemonic archives and wallow in that unforgettable experience, because it will take ages, if ever at all, before we witness such a spectacle again. One thing that caught my eye was the near faultless performance of the entire Black Africa squad, but yours truly will fail in his duty as a pen-pusher if I don't single out the attacking flair and true grit of Botswana import, one Pako Lekgari.

That boy was a genuine marvel to watch and yours truly will be obliged to doff his korrie for the Black Africa management for their foresight to bring a player of such quality to our shores.

Talking about foreign footballers - there are quite a lot of average foreign players in our topflight league and the league authorities should introduce hard and fast rules to prevent our most prized asset from becoming a dumping ground for chance takers and fly-by-nights.

Most of these fly-by-night foreign footballers should never be allowed anywhere near a football pitch - let alone play football for the simple reason that they are just not good enough - they have very little redeeming value. With the game of football, having commercialized of late - these 'moegoes' are taking the bread out of the mouths of promising young footballers and that's totally uncalled for.

Please pardon me, but before you start accusing me of xenophobia and all kinds of jazz and claptrap - what I'm attempting to convey is that we should recruit foreign players who can add value to our football and not just bring in every Dick, even Tom and never mind Harry into our football. The majority of them have very little redeeming value. Period.

What happened to the good old days when stadiums used to the packed to full capacity when foreigners such as Mundu Camana, Tony Belange, Domingos Martin, Armando Pedro, Abilas Bwalya, Baba Kasembe, Lucky Maselesele, Zenga Dodos, Chicco Goncalves, Patrick Banda, Shaya Malausi, Sputla Masite, William Chilufya and Steven Maposa used to entertain local fans with their exciting brand of football?

It's very painful to see teams perched in the bottom half of our topflight league struggling to make ends meet, while having a horde of foreign players on their books who hardly make a contribution to their commendable efforts. Apart from Amy Savihemba (Ramblers), Alex Ferreira (Civics) and Musa Kiriri (Pirates) - most foreign players in the MTC Premiership League are sub-standard and should be ushered through the exit door without further delay if we are to see our football make any progress. I rest my case.

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