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Efforts to bring FA Cup underway

SHARE   |   Monday, 20 February 2017   |   By Othusitse Tlhobogang
BFA President Maclean Letshwiti BFA President Maclean Letshwiti

Following five years FA Cup blackout, Botswana Football Association (BFA) is said to have started efforts to get the competition back. The FA Cup has not been played due to unavailability of sponsorship after Kgalagadi Breweries Limited pulled out of sponsoring the tournament. The competition, which was commonly known as the Coca-Cola Cup, was last played during the 2011/12 season. There have been reports that the new BFA administration led by Maclean Letshwiti wants to bring back the tournament. Contacted for comment BFA spokesperson Tumo Mpatane confirmed that it is indeed the association’s desire to bring the FA Cup back. Mpatane said the BFA has set up a committee that will help the association to find sponsors for the cup. “I can confirm that as the association it is our desire to have the FA Cup back. We have a marketing committee set up to work towards helping the association get sponsors for the FA Cup and all other competitions,” he revealed. Mpatane, however, said at present there is nothing much to say about the cup since no sponsor has been found yet for it. Though it is the BFA’s desire to have the cup back Mpatane could not give a specific time line as to when they want the competition to be up and running. He said all is dependent on when a sponsor will be sourced for it. “At the moment it will be difficult for give a specific date because we have not yet found the sponsor. But as soon as a sponsor is secured we will announce it,” he said.

Soccer lovers have been calling for the FA Cup to be reinstated since it was instrumental in the development of local football. Some argued that the cup provided smaller clubs with a chance to improve their strengths by playing tougher opponents from different divisions. They also say it promoted competition as clubs worked had to prove themselves against bigger ones. “The FA Cup brought flair to our football. It also in a way helped the teams to better scout for players throughout the country,” said one analyst. Letshwiti openly declared that The FA Cup is close to his heart after his election. He said he valued the cup since it provided developmental nature for local teams, adding that since it has a developmental nature it will be central to his programme. Letshwiti has always advocated for development. Even during his campaigns he pointed out that he will be concentrating more on development during his tenure as president. It remains to be seen if the Cup will return soon, following four years of failure by the previous administration to find a sponsor for it. Some believe that since the current BFA president is a businessman he might be able to help to get a sponsor for the competition. They also believe that since the president said the FA Cup will be instrumental to his strategy he will be under pressure to deliver on it.