The Namibian Football Association (NFA) Women’s Desk, was awarded US$40 000 by the world football governing body FIFA for the development of leagues.
Women’s football development manager at FIFA, Cruz Blanco, FIFA hopes that its Women’s Football Development Programmes can assist the NFA in its plan to develop the women’s game in the next four years.
“The NFA team has shown great commitment to the women’s game and we are happy to see all the progress made so far. We look forward to continuing our collaboration in this area. Congratulations to you and your team for all your achievements,” Blanco said in a letter to the NFA.
Coach of the Brave Gladiators, Jacqui Shipanga said the money would go a long way towards the development of women football in the country.
“We are very excited that FIFA is committed to women’s football and is showing faith in the NFA’s management along with the Women’s Desk,” Shipanga said.
“They are saying if the corporate world cannot assist women’s football in the country, then we are there to assist,” she added.
“We asked for the money from FIFA because the NFA has been the only one footing the bill for the Women’s Desk.”
US$10 000 of the money will go towards the Women’s Super League (WSL) which is currently underway. US$25 000 will be used for the regional leagues and US$5 000 is to be used to start a U17 Girls Skills Development League.
“We requested for money to start an U17 league because at the moment we just have the U13, U15 and the WSL. We have nothing for the older players who are not yet ready to play in the super league.”
“We sometimes even have 14 year olds playing in the WSL against 28 year olds, the U17 league can bridge the gap so that the girls can play longer and develop their skills for longer and that’s why it is a skills development league,” Shipanga said.
“At the moment we are still looking at drafting a proposal on whether it can be a seven-a-side league.”
“The regional league is also very important because we will be able to get a lot more players for the national team from the regions,” she added.