Caf warns PSL clubs to create women’s teams or risk African competition hurdle

Caf president Patrice Motsepe has taken a hard line about clubs qualifying for African competitions, saying they need to create women’s teams to be eligible to compete.

Caf president Patrice Motsepe has taken a hard line about clubs qualifying for African competitions, saying they need to create women’s teams to be eligible to compete. Picture: Weam Mostafa BackpagePix

Published Jun 13, 2023


Cape Town - Orlando Pirates, SuperSport United and Sekhukhune United are on a collision course with Caf who are trying to compel clubs to have women’s professional teams.

The three Premiership clubs have qualified for next season’s Champions League and Confederation Cup. The other South African club Mamelodi Sundowns have also qualified, but they have already met Caf’s requirements.

In an effort to raise the profile of women’s football in Africa, Caf decided that all clubs playing in the Champions League and Confederation Cup must have a professional women’s team playing in their domestic professional league.

These are far-reaching measures by Caf and apart from clubs falling foul of required conditions, member associations are also coming up short. Most member associations have clubs playing in continental competitions, but some of these clubs do not have women’s teams.

Many member associations also do not have a professional women’s league in place, and it is almost unlikely that they will meet Caf demands by the 30 June deadline.

SA has a women’s league place so Pirates, SuperSport and Sekhukhune will have to do their bit to meet Caf’s requirements.

There has been speculation that the least clubs can do is form a partnership with a professional team.

In the case of SA, there is a 16-team pro league, the Super League, in place. Caf have stipulated that these leagues must include a minimum of 10 teams.

The only top-flight clubs that have women’s teams are Sundowns, TS Galaxy and Royal AM.

Apart from the fundamentals of fielding women’s teams, Caf has also laid down required qualifications for officials who coach the teams.Caf are expecting its members, in the case of SA, it will be Safa, to perform regular checks to sure that the pro women’s clubs are in place and adhering to requirements.

SuperSport, who finished third in the league have qualified for the Confederation Cup. Their chief executive Stan Matthews has confirmed that the club have been in talks with two Super League team in an attempt to become the fourth top-flight club to have a women’s team.

There has been no word from Pirates and Sekhukhune, but they may be negotiating with women’s clubs to form a partnership.

Member associations and clubs in Africa are facing a host of challenges, but Caf, under the leadership of Patrice Motsepe, is trying to upscale the organisation’s functions.

As a result of difficulties in African football, the newly-formed Caf Super League will start with eight teams instead of 24.Caf have also announced that their premier women’s tournament, the Women’s Champions League, will be played in Ivory Coast at the end of the year.

After successive tournaments in north Africa (Egypt and Morocco), the showpiece event will kick off on the west coast of Africa in December.

The eight-team affair will be a soft test of the country’s football infrastructure ahead of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations, which will be take place in January next year.

Sundowns won the debut event (2021) by beating Ghana’s Hasaacas in the final, 2-0. By doing so, the club became the first club on the continent to have won both the men’s and women’s ultimate prize.


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