'Like a frog jumping over a pork chop'

Logo 9/7/2006 AP Unveiled: The new logo of the 2010 World Cup, which South Africa will hosting, has been revealed in Berlin. Photo: AP

Some like it, some hate it, others are not so sure. The newly-unveiled 2010 Soccer World Cup logo has been met with a mixed response from Cape Town's soccer fraternity.

The logo, designed for the 2010 event in South Africa, represents the shape of Africa in the colours of our flag. Superimposed over it is a somewhat abstract figure of a footballer, possibly inspired by San art, executing an overhead "bicycle" kick.

Goolam Allie, CEO of Santos Football Club, said that he was not overwhelmingly impressed. "It just didn't say 'Wow' to me. I didn't see it for long but I don't believe I should have to. I am not an artist and as a non-artist something either appeals to me or it doesn't - and this doesn't."

Muhsin Ertugrao, the new coach for Ajax Cape Town, said he liked the logo. "We haven't seen what other options there were but I think they chose the right one. The African style of the soccer player performing a bicycle kick is nice."

However, when the logo was unveiled, comments were scathing. One wag described it as "a frog jumping over a pork chop" - the frog being the long-legged footballer with Africa shaped somewhat like a chop.

Graphic designers in Cape Town said they were generally disappointed feeling that it had had potential to be much better.

Vernon Seymour, head of South African Football Union (Western Province), attended the unveiling ceremony in Berlin on Friday as part of an observer mission, and was ecstatic about the new logo.

"I think it is a great logo, a fantastic logo. It represents South African energy with the image of a player on the ball."

Seymour said he liked the incorporation of the African map and SA flag colours in the design, as he felt it would help many African players overseas.

"African players often get a raw deal internationally and don't get full credit for their talents. This event will really highlight that and bring about new talent."

Seymour said that the energy in Berlin during the announcement was amazing and the mood was "buoyant". "The applause we got from the international journalists and other people there was incredible."

He highlighted sections of Fifa president Sepp Blatter's speech which made special mention of the fact that Fifa trusted South Africa to deliver a World Cup that would make Fifa proud.

While travelling around Germany inspecting its infrastructure and the manner in which it is hosting the grand event, Seymour said he was confident the event would be successfully held in South Africa.

"I think we will bring something different to the World Cup. Here in Germany the infrastructure is world class and streets ahead of the rest of Europe. We believe we have the expertise and capabilities to do this and we are very confident that we can."

He pointed out that during his several weeks observing the event, the biggest challenge facing South Africa would be public transport as this would require a major undertaking from the government.

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