Money can definitely buy a PSL status. The only team that was base in Mpumalanga Province has been sold to Cape Town City FC. The supporters of Mpumalanga black aces have no choice but to move-on. This leaves the province without any PSL team. Cape Town City is a completely new team, has no historically memory to draw from, is simple a football business transaction. It’s tough to build a team from zero and progress to the PSl. Those with money seems have a short cut to the top, don’t necessarily need to stress about winning promotions, but move straight to the PSL. For me is no surprise that another team in the PSL is selling their PSL status to Moroka Swallows. The road to the PSL via board room skills instead of football skills creates an interesting trend. Is a transaction which completely ignores the supporter’s emotions. The supporters emotional attachment to any team cannot be quantified in value terms. Off coarse, it was a sad affair to see the downward spiral that the Dube Birds found themselves in. With its history Swallows should be up there amongst the best.
Historically teams toiled from SAB, Vodacom league, NFD and the PSL eventually. Teams like Chippa united manage to move within a very short period of time to the PSL. They look to have built a strong base of fans and are becoming a stable team. Mpumalanga black Aces fans and some players are left wonder what happened. All the emotional investments of the fans is worthless and is never taken into considerations. The other team that was sold from Mpumalanga in the Nkomazi region was Sivutsa stars when it was sold to Royal Eagles. This shows some team owners are interested in own interest. Supporters make a team and it takes time to build a solid suppose base from scratch. Kaizer Chiefs and Pirates are big because of the large fan base they have country wide.
Mbombela united seems to be a team that is doing well in the province. Within a space of five years, Mbombela united management managed to build a reputable team, and by a good fan base. Most on the fans of Mbombela United are around eHlandzeni region. They contested the NFD league excellently and only fail in the last huddle of play offs. Hopefully the team will build from the good start in the coming 2016/2017 season. If Mbombela united did not qualify in the incoming season and gained PSL status, maybe “WE” should consider going the swallow’s route. The team has a solid foundation to succeed in the PSL and it will not be a yo-yo team. The name of the team is strategically, especially because the biggest stadium locally and the municipality shares the same name. Municipalities have played a good supporting roles in local teams for years. They also benefit with a PSL team especially in the hospitality industry.
Unlike abroad, the big three which is Orlando Pirates, Mamelodi Sundowns and kaizer Chiefs have a big support country wide. This is mainly because of historical reasons. In this err is difficult to build a team with a footprint country wide. The best option is localization which Mbombela united is best suited to adopt in their branding and marketing strategy. Big teams around the world like real Madrid, the Manchester teams, Barcelona, Bayern Munich and so on are built around their local cities. They manage to spread worldwide after successes in their local town. Naturally people from far away will begin to appreciate teams that are succeeding. It only took a year in the NFD for soccer lovers to be aware of Mbombela United football club. Local talent brings and galvanize local fans. The whole of eNhlandzeni region only have one team in the NFD and several teams in the ABC Motsepe league. Most of the ABC Motsepe teams have local players which represents a good prospects in the region. Is up to local business man and woman to take the sports forward through support of the sport. Hopefully, either by promotion or acquiring a status, Mbombela united in gunning for the PSl next season.
By Innocent Malinga, a Mbombela united supporter writing on his own capacity.
Disclaimer: The contents of this article are of sole responsibility of the author(s). The http://thediscourse.co.za will not be responsible for any inaccurate or incorrect statement in this article.