South Africa – The South African Football Association (SAFA) has initiated the U15 Girls Inter-LFA League, aimed at nurturing young female football talent. SAFA Technical Director Walter Steenbok began his tour of Local Football Associations (LFAs) to launch the league on Monday, 20 November 2023, with SAFA Waterberg (Limpopo) being the first stop.
According to South African Football Association, SAFA Technical Committee Chairperson and Provincial President Jack Maluleka commenced the proceedings, thanking the regional representatives for their participation. Steenbok emphasized the league’s importance in developing the next U17 girls’ national team and the need to scout and develop talent from villages and rural locations.
The league is set to involve 400 players and 38 women coaches across four provinces. Steenbok outlined the selection criteria for players, focusing on girls born in 2009 – 2010, while also acknowledging the potential to discover younger talents. Additionally, the initiative aims to identify and nurture young coaching talent, with plans for these coaches to undertake CAF D and C coaching courses in April 2024. An online coaching and mentoring program will also be implemented for the league’s coaches.
The U15 Inter-LFA League will run over four months, with an emphasis on regular competitive play. Steenbok advised regions to organize monthly festivals, allowing the girls to play against strong opponents consistently and each team to maintain a roster of at least 20 players. The ultimate goal of the project is to create provincial teams and compile a comprehensive database of all players involved.
The next launch of the U15 Inter-LFA League is scheduled to take place in the Ekangala Region in Mpumalanga.