Tovey’s baby is de­vel­op­ment

CityPress - - Sport - DANIEL MOTHOWAGAE dmoth­owa­gae@city­

Newly ap­pointed Safa tech­ni­cal di­rec­tor Neil Tovey says his job does not in­clude Bafana Bafana team se­lec­tion.

His ap­point­ment was met with mixed re­ac­tions with the SA Football Coaches’ As­so­ci­a­tion ques­tion­ing the ap­point­ment of the for­mer Bafana cap­tain. Se­nior na­tional team coach Shakes Mashaba en­dorsed the move by Safa to in­stall the 1996 Africa Cup of Na­tions-win­ning skip­per as the football gov­ern­ing body’s tech­ni­cal di­rec­tor.

A con­di­tion of Tovey’s ap­point­ment was that he did not in­ter­fere or view him­self as a fu­ture Bafana coach. “I’ve got noth­ing to do with team se­lec­tion but if I have my sug­ges­tions, I can al­ways put them across in nor­mal football con­ver­sa­tions with the coach,” Tovey told City Press.

As his start­ing point, the erst­while Kaizer Chiefs cap­tain said he was on the verge of meet­ings with the pro­vin­cial and re­gional tech­ni­cal of­fi­cers.

“The first as­pect is to get as much in­for­ma­tion as pos­si­ble and get to meet the tech­ni­cal of­fi­cers across the coun­try.”

Safa chief ex­ec­u­tive Dennis Mum­ble said the football gov­ern­ing body had al­ready com­piled a list of about 413 tech­ni­cal of­fi­cers from around the coun­try.

“We have al­ready iden­ti­fied more than 250 of them and I will now leave it to Neil to com­plete that task [of ap­point­ing them],” he said.

The tech­ni­cal di­rec­tor’s man­date ap­pears com­plex on pa­per as the job de­scrip­tion means the per­son in charge is re­spon­si­ble for over­see­ing:

De­vel­op­ment of play­ers at grass­roots level;

Ex­e­cutes the man­date of the tech­ni­cal com­mit­tee;

Over­sees the ac­tiv­i­ties of na­tional team coaches as well as pro­vin­cial, re­gional and lo­cal tech­ni­cal of­fi­cers; and

Over­sees coach­ing ed­u­ca­tion and de­vel­op­ment de­part­ments.

Safa Vi­sion 2022 tech­ni­cal master plan

Ju­nior and se­nior na­tional teams, also in women’s football;

Es­tab­lish­ing and im­ple­ment­ing na­tional com­pe­ti­tions; and

Pro­grammes for coaches and ref­er­ees.

“We have to un­pack the com­plex­i­ties and fo­cus on key ar­eas,” said Tovey, who turned 53 on Thurs­day. “I want to help lay the in­fra­struc­ture that will be sus­tain­able for years to come – with youth de­vel­op­ment and high per­for­mance cen­tres in place.”

Al­ready Tovey – who holds a pro coach­ing li­cence – comes to his new job with much ex­pe­ri­ence in youth de­vel­op­ment, hav­ing laid the ground­work with SAB’s Search for the Su­per­stars of To­mor­row pro­gramme and his work with schools.

Tovey’s in­volve­ment with youth football dates back to 1994 through the Transnet Neil Tovey coach­ing clin­ics – which laid the foun­da­tion for the Safa School of Ex­cel­lence.

Tovey said he was in good health af­ter be­ing hos­pi­talised fol­low­ing three heart at­tacks in Fe­bru­ary.

“My heart con­di­tion is good. I went for a checkup re­cently. I am good.”



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