First Instance Body (FIB), a Botswana Football Association structure is fascinated by Township Rollers’ seriousness when it comes to club licensing and football professionalism.
The body has written to the log leaders awe-struck by their competence and manner in which club licensing file was executed and completed. It is also noted that the BFA organ even called other premier league clubs to take a leaf from Rollers’ book if they are to turn professional. “To date the Township Rollers file has been okayed to be used as a reference point for other clubs still struggling of finding it difficult to compile files as per required standards.”
BFA communiqué means Rollers becomes the first team to satisfy club licensing requirement without even asked to. Behind Rollers is Jwaneng Galaxy who are also eager to impress the able bodies. The two clubs are believed to be ahead of other teams largely because they are about to compete in CAF champions leagues. Rollers are the BTC premiership champions while Galaxy has won the Mascom Top 8 tournament. Remarkably, the two clubs were wrestling each other for the coveted P 1.3 million.
All the while, it is understood that BFA is intending to expel all premier league clubs that will fail club licensing litmus test. Club licensing is the blue print incorporated by FIFA to force football teams to professionalise themselves. It includes-inter alia- that teams should wear regalia with printed names and owning of operational offices by teams. Last season, 12 premier league clubs were given a waiver after failing to regularize their files. Rollers topped the scales of the remaining four teams.
Teams are therefore encouraged to tighten their shoe laces otherwise they will survive the axe. Whatever the move, Rollers ticks all the right boxes. Last season alone, a lot was expected from so many clubs that used to give Rollers a run for their money. GU, a traditional rival of Township Rollers tried to be robust on the transfer window, but players recruited could not play as a unit. On the other hand, Rollers continues to raise the bar every season and the chasing pack fail to improve.
There is significant evidence that these clubs are on their way back to misery. There might be a considerable quality, verve and excitement in the league – and more than a glimmer at the end of the tunnel brought by both Orapa United and Jwaneng Galaxy, but these are new clubs still suffering from long term season syndrome. Both have won the Mascom Top 8 tourney- playing only 5 games to lift the cup.
Knocking Rollers off their perch already proves to be a difficult task for other premier league campaigns. There is no semblance of hope that the teams will put a spirited fight to ensure that Rollers food does not come on silver plate. This further fuels a view that the league is no longer competitive- where Rollers is playing against its former best.
The Manchester United defender will now focus on his club career having made 93 caps for France, appearing at three world cups and on European championship. The Les Bleus won the World cup in 2018 and Raphael Varane started all but one of France’s matches in Qatar as they finished as runners up to Argentina
With many being of the view that the state of football in Botswana has deteriorated significantly as it is no longer appealing to the business community, this was a good week for the football community. The Botswana Football Association (BFA) leadership under the stewardship of MacLean Letshwiti secured sponsorship for a combined value of P19. 3 million for the FA Cup competition and the First Division league – both South and North.