Jordaan says Amajimbos are targeting U17 World Cup, as they depart for Colombia

Jordaan says Amajimbos are targeting U17 World Cup, as they depart for Colombia

As the South African national U17 team prepares to depart for Colombia today, to play international friendly matches, South African Football Association (SAFA) President Danny Jordaan says this will help to qualify regularly for the FIFA U17 World Cup.

The world’s football mother body recently announced that as of next year (2025), the U17 World Cups for men and women will be hosted annually, with Morocco set to host the first five editions of the boys’ U17 tournament.

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 Jordaan confirmed over the weekend that the team is departing for Cali in Colombia to play two international friendlies.

''Below that we have junior teams, U17, U20. Our U17 team is now making final preparations to go play an international match against Colombia. Why is that important, because FIFA took a decision that every year there will be a World Cup,'' said Jordaan.

Amajimbos have not qualified for the World Cup since 2015 in Chile when Molefi Ntseki’s team of Reeve Frosler, Khanyisa Mayo, Siphephelo Sithole, and Kobamelo Kodisang just to count a few, had finished as runners-up in the U17 AFCON to Mali. With the U17 World Cup now expanded to 48 teams annually and no longer biennially, Jordaan says this helps to accelerate football development.

''In the past we have argued that it does not make sense to  have U17 and U20 every second year, because when you play U17 this year and not next year, you skip a whole generation of players. And we see the effect of that in the progression of senior teams,'' added Jordaan.

Meanwhile, Jordaan has also confirmed that they are forging ahead with standardizing coaching standards in professional football next season as part of meeting the club license requirements.

SABC Sport has learnt that most Member Associations on the continent are under pressure from CAF to implement club license requirements which also include coaching standards.

In December, the SAFA NEC took a decision to implement the requirements of CAF A (head coaches) and CAF B (assistant coaches) as from next season in the Premier Soccer League (PSL) and Jordaan says nothing has changed.

''You see we have to standardise requirements, across the board, coach education is important,'' he added.

Previously, the challenge was that SAFA had stopped offering the CAF A and B license coaching courses as they were yet to comply with the new CAF Coaching Convention.

However, through the efforts of SAFA Technical Director Walter Steenbok which has since been rectified, and a group of coaches in the CAF A licensing coaching course including top PSL coaches like Gavin Hunt, Steve Barker, and Eric Tinkler are set to graduate in June, as Jordaan explains.

By the end of this month, a CAF B coaching course also dominated by PSL coaches will be starting in Ekurhuleni and going on until July.