Parreira, the 1994 FIFA World Cup winner and 2006 quarterfinalist with his native Brazil, recently failed to take the South African national team beyond the first round of the same competition and blamed it on the big number of foreigners plying their trade in the South African league. As a prescription for Bafana Bafana to make an impact on world football, Parreira told the media in Johannesburg last week that South African clubs should limit the number of foreigners in their ranks and give priority to football development initiatives.
He blamed the ever-rising number of foreigners in the league as the reason behind the 1996 African champions continued slide to the doldrums of soccer. He said that he has already communicated this to the South African Football Association (SAFA) and expected it to be acted upon. Youngsters are the way forward, and it would be a good idea to invest in this and I have put in my report that it might be a good idea to consider reducing the number of foreign players at clubs, said the 67-year-old Brazilian.
There are a lot of foreigners here; five at each club, and if they South Africa wants to stand out, then maybe it would be better to have a maximum of two only. The PSL is very strong and well-organised and there’s money there, but it doesn’t help that there are no youth leagues. You can’t make progress without them. Youngsters are the way forward, and it would be a good idea to invest in this. In Brazil we have a talent factory that runs 24 hours a day, shift after shift, and that’s our greatest strength.”
Parreiras report might sound a dearth knell to the aspirations of most Zimbabwean players, who have continued to flood the neighbouring country for better fortunes, as they fail to break into bigger leagues. Zimbabweans make the biggest number of foreigners in the South African league, with each of two glamour clubs, Kaizer Chiefs and Mamelodi Sundowns having four Zimbabwean players each in their ranks. SAFA is yet to act or comment on Parreiras report.Post published in: Zimbabwe Sports News