Khoza slams SuperSport

2012-05-23 09:08
Irvin Khoza (Gallo)
Johannesburg - Premier Soccer League and Orlando Pirates chairperson Dr Irvin Khoza has issued a statement damning SuperSport United's "mindless utterances" in regard to the Buccaneers' new sponsorship deal.

Last week Pirates, along with fellow Soweto club Kaizer Chiefs, put pen to a mammoth R1 billion deal with mobile giant Vodacom, with both clubs set to earn around R100 million per year, over a period of five years.

On Tuesday, Matsatsantsa CEO Jose Ferreira launched a stinging attack on the trio, claiming the agreement was "not sustainable" and that South African football is now "in serious trouble".

However, Dr Khoza has now responded to those claims, and issued a statement late on Tuesday evening.

The statement read: I read with grave concern mindless utterances attributed to the SuperSport United Chief Operating Officer and coach in response to the sponsorship announcement of our nations' two largest clubs, Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs, by a key supporter of football in our country, Vodacom.

I have been observing with sadness how Gavin Hunt, the SuperSport United coach, has in the last few years resorted to mindless tirades aimed at everyone other than himself all in his quest to divert attention from his recent lack of achievement. This is an accomplished coach, who characterised 'cool', and never make any of these outbursts when he was on the driving seat winning three Premierships in a row. Mamelodi Sundowns, which SuperSport United is facing in the Nedbank Cup final on Saturday, was not spared from Hunt's tirade. Is this another of his diversionary tactics - in case he loses to Sundowns on Saturday?

The joining of Hunt by Jose Ferreira, SuperSport United Chief Operating Officer now makes me question if this is SuperSport United Football Club and Multichoice, their parent company's official position. I am responding publicly to this mindless action by people who should know better because the courtesy of behind closed doors discussions will encourage the incorrigible to join in this 'gang- bang' of mindlessness.

We have worked very hard in the last fifteen years to ensure that the PSL brand drives the recovery of our football from many years of being undervalued to the point that affect the quality of our game in the continent and the world. Our competition is not only local. Thanks to SuperSport, the channel that owns SuperSport United, our local product competes in real time with the well funded leagues in Europe.

We have made significant progress in this regard. When we started, fifteen years ago, clubs received from the league a grant of a million rands per annum. Today all the clubs in the PSL receive a grand of a million rands a month. This bears testimony to the power of the PSL as a channel of choice for South African marketers eager to reach the esteemed and loyal following of our league. So valuable is the value proposition that we have created that SuperSport, the company that owns SuperSport United, outbid the SABC to acquire broadcast rights at an investment of two billion rands.

The sacrifice and selflessness of Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs in creating an equitable and competitive league cannot be over emphasised. Distribution of proceeds in the PSL is done the same for each team notwithstanding the size and contribution by Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs. In mentioning the players he claims to have lost, Hunt chooses to omit the high prices SuperSport charged. Every time Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs express an interest in players, prices sky rockets. To now decry the sponsorship that Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs command due to their market positions is not only deflationary but create a risk of devaluing football in South Africa once more.

Hunt and Ferreira's tirades seem to suggest that the only measure of equity that they would accept is when SuperSport United is dominating the league. Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs are supposed to be mere numbers in a league dominated by them with the support of their rich parent company. This is besides their playing week in and week out in near empty stadiums.

I do not know whether to attribute these utterances to ignorance or mischief making. Whichever is the reason, the effect is the same. I am responding publicly to this mindlessness because our sponsors and partners, who have an appreciation of our value, are now finding themselves under pressure to defend their investments in football because of the questions resulting from utterances from these careless and callous people.

Read more on:    orlando pirates  |  psl  |  irvin khoza  |  soccer

What To Read Next


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
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

25 October 2016
Chippa United v Bloemfontein Celtic, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium 19:30
26 October 2016
Ajax Cape Town v Wits, Cape Town Stadium 19:30
28 October 2016
Maritzburg United v Golden Arrows, Harry Gwala Stadium 20:00
Chippa United v Platinum Stars, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium 20:00
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

When all is said and done in the 2015/16 Absa Premiership season, who will be crowned champions of South Africa?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

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.