We hope you like our fresh style and our fresh features, so please do let us know what you think. Talking of that, check out our section of tweets on Page 5, where we provide you with the twitter handles of all our writers, in case you want to interact directly with them, as well as picking our favourite tweets from the week just gone.
On Page 4, you will see our SA Players Abroad section, where we bring you three South Africans plying their trade overseas who have made waves in the past seven days or so.
Elsewhere, just opposite you can see our expanded Team-of-the-Week, which we have always carried, but this time we explain the reasoning behind the players who have made the grade.
Speaking of players who have made the grade, on Page 7 you will find the Phakaaathi Player-of-the-Month competition, highlighting four players who made waves in the Premier Soccer League in the month of August. It should be a tight contest this month, and you have a chance to win R350 in airtime by entering the competition, so get voting!
Alongside that is the latest from Phakaaathi’s Fantasy Football league, which readers still have the chance to enter. There are great prizes to be given away on a monthly basis.
I must also take this time to welcome our new columnist, Orlando Pirates, Kaizer Chiefs and Bafana Bafana legend Stanton Fredericks. “Stiga” casts his eye over the MTN8 semifinals that happened over the weekend, with Kaizer Chiefs out of the reckoning for another trophy, while Mamelodi Sundowns also slipped away, leaving the same finalists as in 2017, SuperSport United and Cape Town City, to battle it out for R8 million.
“Stiga” also gives a brief view on Bafana Bafana, who take on Libya on Saturday in Durban in a qualifier for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
Stuart Baxter has courted controversy by hiring his own son, Lee, as goalkeeping coach for Bafana. I, however, don’t have a problem with this. Lee Baxter, after all, is a well-qualified goalkeeping coach, the current goalkeeping coach at Kaizer Chiefs, who is working with Bafana’s current No 1, Itumeleng Khune.
It certainly makes sense to bring in a coach who Khune is used to working with as a replacement for Andre Arendse.
Baxter’s Bafana squad has been hit by a series of injuries, which can happen to any coach ahead of an international, but the quality of players that Baxter has lost, in Hlompho Kekana, Themba Zwane and Bongani Zungu, has to be a major blow ahead of the game against Libya.
Still, one man’s loss is another’s gain, and Vincent Pule, Aubrey Modiba and Tiyani Mabunda now all have a chance to impress.
One just hopes Bafana don’t pick up any more injuries ahead of what is an important game against Libya. The team are well positioned to qualify for Cameroon 2019 after an impressive opening Group E win over Nigeria, and with next year’s tournament expanded to 24 teams, meaning the top two teams in each group qualify. But that doesn’t mean they can start being complacent.
Finally, if this revamped Phakaaathi isn’t already enough for your football taste-buds, then look out this Friday for a bigger, better Phakaaathi Plus, coming in with three pages of local and three pages of international football together with two pages of betting news. That’s double the content for the same great price!
One simply couldn’t ask for more.
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