Paul Habib's Junior Birds Update
Tuesday March 07 2006
Moroka Swallows Head of Development Paul Habib brings us the latest news on the Beautiful Birds' juniors.
The winners of the 2005 Nike Premier Cup are in full swing with preparations for the new 2006 season. They participated in a pre-season tournament held by Silver Stars, featuring clubs like Kaizer Chiefs, Cosmos, Wits University to name a few. They beat Cosmos in the final 4-2 on a penalty shoot-out, with two great saves by Sage Lottering secured us the trophy.
They are currently campaigning in the Eastern Gauteng District senior league (reserves) and got off to a great start, winning both their games by 1-0 and 4-0. The team is coached by Reginald Ketse, who has just completed his Level Two coaching course. The team is expected to retain the U17 Sakhabanqobi trophy, which is an in-house tournament. This tournament drew 32 outside teams last year, this year it will be cut to 16 teams.
They won the Metropolitan league in the Gauteng East District Football Association, runners-up were Mamelodi Sundowns who were three points behind. After a long season playing in the Gauteng East District Football Association Senior League 2005 (coming third), they immediately started the Metropolitan League. After this they have started the Senior league again. The boys have done brilliantly considering that the team consists mainly of Under-15s, U16s and U17s. Gavin Hunt has identified some players to join the first team for training. The squad is currently also preparing for the Bayhill Cup to be played in Cape Town from April 12-17.
The following players from our development have been selected to go for trials in the United States Ohio in June:
Teddy Mulumba - Midfielder
Paul Habib (jnr) - Defender
Petrus Matalingonne - Midfielder
Alan Thomas - Goalkeeper
Sibusiso Malaba - Left wing
Kasana Mahlamba - Goalkeeper
Kelly Varner - Defender