Johannesburg - Bafana Bafana assistant coach Thabo Senong has heaped praise on Absa Premiership teams who are fielding young players.
“Credit must go to all our PSL coaches for giving young players a chance,” Senong, who is also the national Under-20 coach, said.
“Of course, even the National First Division (NFD) coaches must be thanked.
“I see a lot of youngsters playing in the MDC (MultiChoice Diski Challenge) and, of course, the PSL,” he said.
He mentioned inexperienced players who have hit the ground running in their clubs.
“Sibusiso Mabiliso is doing well at AmaZulu, Grant Margeman at Ajax Cape Town, Wiseman Meyiwa at Kaizer Chiefs, Kobamelo Kodisang at Bidvest Wits and Keletso Makgalwa at Mamelodi Sundowns.
“Their future looks bright - but well done to the coaches for believing in young talent.”
Senong also acknowledged the role the SAB League plays in developing young talent.
“We benefit a lot, especially from the annual SAB Under-21 championships. That’s where a lot of scouts come to select players.
“That’s where we as national coaches come to select the best players because we get to see all the players from all provinces playing in one place.”
Senong, speaking at the SAB League Coaching Course media open day at the High Performance Centre in Pretoria, has been accepted to study for a master’s coaching diploma at the Johan Cruyff Institute in Holland.
The SAFA 52 regions sent a coach each to develop their skills at the centre.
Most of the Amajita players who were at the FIFA World Cup in South Korea last year will start preparing for the Under-20 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON), which will be held in Niger next year, as well as for the Under-20 FIFA World Cup next year.
“We are in our two-year cycle to qualify for the 2019 FIFA World Cup and we are starting our preparation camp in April.”
Senong said the Under-20 team would start with their AFCON qualifiers in May and finalise them in July.
Last year, Senong’s boys reached the semi-finals of the CAF competition held in Zambia to qualify for the World Cup, where they were eliminated in the group stages.