Lucas Radebe, a former Bafana Bafana and Leeds United captain believe billionaire businessman Patrice Motsepe is the biblical Messiah football has been waiting for in South Africa.
Motsepe is the current president of the Confederation of African Football, Africa’s football governing body. (Caf) after succeeding a Morocco leader in the position.
Radebe, on the other hand, is thrilled with how Motsepe has revived school football through an international competition currently taking place in Durban.
Radebe is one of the ambassadors for the African Schools Football Championship, which began on Wednesday.
The event will be held through April 8th. Aside from the tournament, Caf also hosted a number of training sessions for local children. Radebe praised Motsepe in an interview with Ukhozi FM’s Victor Molife on Wednesday evening.
“As may all know, we have been talking about schools’ football for a long time,” said Radebe.
A long-standing plea in South Africa for a return to active school football is because it is where the best talent may be identified.
Former players like as Radebe, Helman Mkhalele, Doctor Khumalo, and many others were recruited from schools.
“And we have been complaining that schools’ football is dead or dying. But now Patrice with his power he has firstly brought former players into his vision.
“It has taken football onto another level. This gives an opportunity to the young and upcoming players.
“I mean, for them to play an international football competition as young as they are – from ages of 12 to 15. We know this is not development and it should go lower than that (age). But this is a great opportunity,” Radebe added.
Apart from restoring school football, Radebe adds Motsepe has been involved with his family foundation’s trust.
“He has played a big role in football… With Mamelodi Sundowns, the Motsepe Foundation (Championship) and ABC Motsepe League. So, he knows what is needed in order to improve or to get football to the next level,” Radebe says.
Patrice Motsepe was elected into the position of Caf president in 2021, succeeding Morocco’s Ahmad Ahmad.
He had ten points in his manifesto, including investing in each African country through sponsorships, expanding and strengthening women’s football, and creating Video Assistant Refereeing (VAR) on the continent.
Caf has also mandated that every side competing in the Champions League from next season include a women’s team.