The South Africa Football Association (SAFA) announced that a disagreement over payment with the Women’s World Cup team has been resolved thanks to a generous donation from a charity.
The team, also known as ‘Banyana Banyana’, was scheduled to play a friendly match against Botswana on Sunday before heading to the tournament in Australia and New Zealand.
However, due to a disagreement between the team and SAFA regarding bonuses and contracts for the major event, a substitute national team, including a 13-year-old player, was fielded instead.
SAFA stated that a friendly resolution was achieved after receiving a donation from the Motsepe Foundation, which prioritizes the well-being of youth, women, and other vulnerable populations in Africa.
Minister of Sport Zizi Kodwa had urged SAFA to meet with the players’ union (SAFPU) to resolve the matter, and he expressed satisfaction in a statement on Wednesday that the two parties had successfully reconciled.
“I made the call for SAFA and SAFPU to come together to urgently address the concerns raised by Banyana Banyana, who inspire the country so much,” said Kodwa.
“The Motsepe Foundation was also approached, and I am thrilled by the contribution that they made.”
“Banyana Banyana can now focus fully on the FIFA Women’s World Cup, knowing that their immediate concerns have been addressed.”
The CEO of the foundation, Precious Moloi-Motsepe, stated that they felt obligated to make a modest contribution.
South Africa is scheduled to play against Costa Rica in a final preparation match in Christchurch on July 15. Their Group G campaign begins on July 23 against Sweden, followed by matches against Italy and Argentina.