Safa say no to helping CAF out by SA hosting its women’s cup
The SA Football Association is, instead, focusing on hosting the 2023 Fifa World Cup, despite the current popularity of women’s football
The SA Football Association (Safa) will not come to the aid of the Confederation of African Football (CAF)‚ who are desperately seeking a new host for the 2020 Africa Women Cup of Nations.
The CAF executive meets on Thursday to discuss a range of issues‚ and one of the items on the agenda‚ seen by TimesLIVE‚ is to probe the “willingness” of SA to parachute in as emergency hosts of the women’s championship.
This after the original staging of the tournament was due to be in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)‚ before that country withdrew from hosting in July.
However, acting Safa CEO Gay Mokoena says the country will not accept the pleas of CAF.
“We are not going to express an interest on this. We are instead trying to focus our efforts on the 2023 Fifa World Cup‚” Mokoena told TimesLIVE. “I will write to CAF to advise them that we will not express any interest in hosting this tournament.”
SA is one of seven bids to stage the global showpiece‚ which was a huge success in France in 2019 as interest in women’s football is at an all-time high.
Argentina‚ Australia (possibly jointly with New Zealand)‚ Brazil‚ Colombia‚ Japan and South Korea (possibly with North Korea) are the other bids on the table‚ with the deadline to complete the registration December 13.
Safa does not want to side-track the government from the 2023 process by going to them for financial guarantees for the continental finals in 2020.
The host for the next World Cup is due to be announced by Fifa in May next year.
Standing in SA’s favour is the fact that the Women’s World Cup has never been staged on African soil and Fifa has made a big push to uplift the game on the continent. All infrastructure is also already in place with the stadiums and facilities from the 2010 men’s World Cup built and ready.
One Safa insider said, though, that if SA does not get the right to host the 2023 Fifa World Cup‚ they could move to host the 2022 Africa Women Cup of Nations.
That is because the tournament will serve as the qualifier for the 2023 Fifa World Cup and playing it on home soil could give Banyana Banyana a significant edge.