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SA SOCCER NEWS
FC Fortune coach eyeing Premiership 16/04/04
First Division coastal outfit FC Fortune are currently sitting just off the pace at the top of the table, but coach Colin Gie is confident that his side can make the step up to top flight football next season.

Touchline Photo

Gie was responsible for the establishment of the highly successful youth academy at Hellenic and is also a former Greek Gods manager, player and captain.

He is now hoping to return to the Castle Premiership with the side he was instrumental in establishing, FC Fortune.

The Wynberg-based side are currently in third place, five points behind leaders Bush Bucks, but they do have a game in hand on the Eastern Cape club and second placed Avendale Athletico.

They square up to another Cape team, the fourth-placed Vasco da Gama, at the Wynberg Military base Stadium on Sunday.

SASoccer365's Anthony McLennan caught up with Gie to talk about life in the first division and the aims he has for his club.

AM: Hi Colin, thanks for speaking to SASoccer365. Can you please start off by telling us how long you have been involved at Fortune and what your aims for the club are.

CG: I was responsible (along with Quinton Fortune) for the establishment of the club about five season's ago. Our main aim is to be a youth development club, to discover and nurture the talent that is right on our doorstep. (The club regularly sends players on overseas trials and recently sold promising young defender, Bevan Fransman, to Kaizer Chiefs.)

At the moment we have a three year plan in progress whereby we intend to be in the PSL in this period, and at the moment it is right on track - we hope to be promoted this season.

AM: That was my next question - can your team close the gap on the two teams above you?

CG: Yes, I am confident we can. We have a game in hand and we still have to play Bush Bucks at home, which will be a massive game. There are still nine games to go - all these matches will be key, but I strongly believe we can do it.

AM: There have been constant reports over the years that corruption is rife in the lower leagues, especially the first division. What is your take on this?

CG: Yes, we have experienced this. I don't want to make an specific allegations, but lets just say when playing out of Cape Town there are always distractions.

It is no coincidence that Cape sides are never promoted, the teams that win the league always seem to come from a certain area.

AM: Are you hoping that the advent of the new national first division will help to stamp out this problem?

CG: Yes, I am confident that this will happen. PSL boss Trevor Philips has done a great job in his marketing of the Premiership and I am sure this will now be the case in the new first division.

I am hoping that with better resources and more extensive media coverage  these problems will be highlighted and eradicated from the league. Media coverage will make people more accountable for their actions.

I think that the formation of the new league is a great move and if marketed correctly it can be used as a vehicle by the PSL to gain more support for soccer in this country.

AM: What is the standard of play like in the first division these days - there are a number of ex-PSL players now playing in this league.

CG: The standard is good. The players might not all be as tactically blessed as their Premiership counterparts, but I believe that the matches are even more competitive - games are played at a very high pace.

I have noticed that when players from Premiership clubs come down to the first division they often struggle. Also, when we played Manning Rangers in an Absa Cup game recently we performed very well and should actually have won the game.

This match was a good confidence booster and showed the guys that we can play at the highest level.

AM: Well, thanks Colin, it was good talking to you and all the best with your quest for promotion.

CG: Sure, no problem.

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