One of the big question marks hovering over the industry right now is whether greedy administrators are unfairly cashing in on this vast amount of cash being pumped into the soccer industry and whether there is even any real sustainable investment for the businesses.
One football agent who spoke to Finweek expressed consternation at the fact that there have been many cases where South African soccer players struggle to survive after retirement, with many dying poverty-stricken. “While I am not privy to the personal circumstances leading the dire situation the families of the deceased get left with, there is a general lack of proper f inancial planning in our football industry,” says Tim Sukazi, CEO of t a l ent management agency QT Sports.
Sukazi says that they now have i nterventions i n place to assist t heir players in putting a proper f inancial and retirement plan in place.
Salaries vary widely ‒ there are players, some even playing for the big clubs, who earn a paltry R5 000 a month. Sukazi quickly comes to the defence of Chiefs and Pirates, stating that these teams’ contracted players do not earn less than than R30 000 a month.
The Premier Soccer League provides grants of R2m to all of the 16 soccer teams that partake in the Absasponsored competition. The money is used for the running costs of the club including salaries and other overheads. The clubs, however, have to pay their own stadium rentals. Interestingly, none of the football clubs actually own a stadium. Stadium rental per match can cost up to R200 000.
However, Chiefs have signed a sweet deal with the Mbombela Local Municipality where the team is paid by the municipality to bring its games to the iconic 2010 World Cup stadium. Chiefs pockets about R1.5m per match staged at the stadium. The municipality then also finances security and cleaning services. This investment also presents business opportunities for local small vendors.