Sunday, October 25, 2020

Women football wallows in muddle

A confusion of sorts reigns supreme at the Botswana Football Association (BFA) regarding the state of affairs of women’s football league.

The mix-up is said to have been caused by an attempt by the BFA to regionalise the women’s leagues.

As a result, some clubs are said to have not honoured their scheduled first round league matches, citing confusion on the set up.

At the beginning of this season, the BFA had sought that the ladies’ elite league be regionalised while the women national football committee differed.

Sources close to the matter revealed that the women national committee was of a view that the developments will be better placed for next season.

‘’It was a challenge to regionalise the league this season as there should be at least six teams to form a league set-up. The BFA wanted to force matters but nothing clear was resolved yet hence some clubs did not honour their opening fixtures.

The Makufa against Wonder match could not be played as hosts Makufa allegedly declined honouring it citing that they were ordered to play regional football,” a source told Sunday Standard.

According to the source, with many regions failing to meet the six-team requisite to start a league, the BFA endeavour to regionalise could not materialise.

“As of now Kgatleng and South East so far have two clubs each in their region and Kweneng  have four, to name a few, hence there has been a delay in the start of the league despite it being sanctioned; it was not agreed on some terms,” said a source.

In an interview with Sunday Standard, women football Vice Chairman Victor Tshambani confirmed that they were still finding it difficult to resolve the regionalisation matter with the BFA.

He said the football governing body had instructed them to regionalise without consultation which led to the matter dragging and delay of the league commencement.

‘’It was challenging to start the league this season as we were instructed by the BFA to regionalise before consulting concerned clubs. We disagreed with the BFA due to lack of preparations and consultation as some regions can’t form a league due to the thin structures within their respective regions. The laws states that a league structure can only be formed by six or more clubs and in most cases a region only boasts of two or three clubs which is a challenge,” said Tshambani.

He said they had resorted to restructuring next season and all clubs were aware of the agreement.

“We have agreed that the league carry on with the current arrangements of the past seasons with changes to be made next season so any club that has declined playing will face the consequences of the laws of the game,” added Tshambani.

BFA spokesperson Tumo Mpatane downplayed the matter saying:  “We have never forced the committee to regionalise this season. In several meetings that we had with the women football committee it was agreed that the restructuring of the league would commence next season. We believe that regionalising women football is best suited for growth of the women game and for Makufa it is another matter that still needs screening to clarify their absence at the game,” said Mpatane.

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