Poor AFCON turnout in PE

2013-01-31 19:48
Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium (File)

Port Elizabeth - A tavern owner near Port Elizabeth's Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) stadium on Thursday lamented how little the soccer tournament had done to boost business.

“I would have expected it to be packed here, but nothing going. It was dead. I'm a bit disappointed,” Charles Forlee, owner of Chalees Tavern, said.

His establishment is less than one kilometre from the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, venue of eight Africa Cup of Nations games.

“It's very ironic, the whole of South Africa, Africa in fact, are soccer mad people.”

Ghana, one of the favourites to lift the trophy, take on Cape Verde Islands in a quarter-final clash there on Saturday, but it is business as usual for locals.

None of the group stage matches managed to draw enough people to fill even half of the 48 000-seat stadium, built for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Ghana have played two of their matches in the "friendly city", and Cape Verde one.

“This has not been as good as the World Cup, nothing as much as that. Business-wise, likewise,” Forlee said.

“There is an improvement from a normal day. Nothing to write home about. The atmosphere has been very mediocre, the only time you seem to know there's something going on, like a crowd of supporters, say Congo, for example. They come in a big group marching down here with their flag and their whistles and then there is a slight atmosphere.

“Once they pass, that's gone.”

Forlee said he was not optimistic about the knockout games bringing a change.

“We hoped so. We tried to set up an African atmosphere, having a braai out there (on the pavement), but it didn't help.”

The city will host its final match in the third/fourth place playoff on February 9.

Read more on:    afcon  |  soccer

Tinkler: We gave it our all

2015-11-30 07:44


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk


Bafana Bafana have been drawn with Cameroon, Gambia and Mauritania in the qualification stages for the 2017 AFCON tournament. Where will Shakes Mashaba's men finish in their pool?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


30 of the world's greatest golfers will be heading to the Gary Player Country Club for this year's Nedbank Golf Challenge - now in its 35th year. For all the latest news, player profiles, hole-by-hole descriptions and past winners, be sure to check out Sport24's dedicated section.

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.