Will Africa’s leaders make the right choice?

February 19, 2016 Articles 3 Comments

Members of the CAF executive committee

    “There comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular but he must take it because conscience tells him it is right.” – Martin Luther King. With a week to the election of a new president for FIFA – assuming, of course, another dramatic intervention, […]

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Outsiders, Insiders and the status quo…

April 7, 2013 Articles 1 Comment

During my visit to Morocco, for last month’s CAF congress, I was, inevitably, at the Hotel Sofitel in Marrakech, which was the expected beehive of activities, as the continent’s football politicians congregated there. But, as you might guessed, that’s not the story I’m planning to tell… What you might find interesting is this encounter I […]

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Ringing truth’s Bells (Part 2)

March 16, 2013 Articles Leave a comment

After the rather ‘interesting’ spectacle of the CAF elective congress in Marrakech, Morocco, which I have written about, extensively, in my weekly column for insideworldfootball.com and in a subsequent commentary piece for PlayTheGame (www.playthegame.org), an organisation that strongly advocates for good governance in international sport organisations, I am purposely not saying anything further about the […]

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Ringing truth’s bells (Part 1)

March 6, 2013 Articles Leave a comment

Having a conversation with former Cameroon goalkeeper Joseph-Antoine Bell, the 1988 Africa Cup of Nations winner, is always entertaining. But thought-provoking. The 58-year old, who lost his place in the Indomitable Lions squad, that had the historic quarter-final World Cup run at Italia ’90, for speaking out against the poor treatment received by his colleagues, […]

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Uneasy lies the head…

February 25, 2013 Articles Leave a comment

Kirsten Nematandani, the president of SAFA, the South African Football Association, has had a pretty rough time, following the publication of FIFA’s report into match-fixing, involving Bafana-Bafana, South Africa’s national team, before the 2010 World Cup finals. The report, released late last year, revealed that friendly matches against Bulgaria, Colombia, Guatemala and Thailand were fixed. […]

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The perplexing paradox that is Nigeria…

February 15, 2013 Articles 1 Comment

“The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.” – Thomas Paine What it is about the three-time African champions, which gives it the rather amusing but perplexing ability to pull chaos and organisational mayhem out of the sharp jaws of heady triumph, as it defied the so-called experts, myself included, to lift a third […]

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Postcard from Jo’burg: Enigmas, fortitude, cheats and politics…

February 8, 2013 Articles 2 Comments

When I wrote a piece for When Saturday Comes, the monthly English football magazine, on the state of Nigeria’s Super Eagles, ahead of the 1998 World Cup finals in France, I said, in my opening remarks, that “Perhaps like nowhere else in the football world, the recent history of the game in Nigeria is one […]

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Postcard From Durban (2): Where Is the ‘Real’ Cup of Nations being played?

February 2, 2013 Articles Leave a comment

For ‘ordinary’ watchers of the Cup of Nations, the exciting part of this tournament begins this weekend, with the start of the knockout stages, where no prisoners are taken and none offered. It’s certain to provide lots of twists, turns and high drama, right until the very end, when the new champions of Africa will […]

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Postcard from Durban: Questions of language, competence, integrity and the future

January 27, 2013 Articles Leave a comment

The last time I made an effort to check, English, French and Portuguese are languages not indigenous to Africa. They became an integral, inescapable part of the continent’s lingua franca only because of the colonial experience, inflicted upon it by buccaneering Europeans that exploited its riches. But the legacies that these ‘foreign’ languages have left, […]

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Postcard from Rustenburg: Does truth have a hiding place?

January 22, 2013 Articles Leave a comment

“The truth is incontrovertible. Malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it but in the end, there it is.” – Winston Churchill Whether it’s on a green, lush pitch – in front of nearly 90,000 spectators at Johannesburg’s Soccer City, or in the game’s corridors of political power – where its high chiefs and mandarins […]

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Nations Cup special: “Walking down Champions’ Avenue”

January 16, 2013 Articles Leave a comment

Winning the Africa Cup of Nations, in their very appearance in 1996, following their return to the continental football family, was one of the greatest sporting moments in South Africa’s history. Beating Cameroon’s Indomitable Lions and Ghana’s Blacks Stars on the path to the trophy and vanquishing Tunisia’s formidable Carthage Eagles in that memorable final, […]

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Exclusive interview – Can the ‘Big Boss’ revive Nigeria’s Super Eagles?

January 12, 2013 Articles Leave a comment

Fondly known as the “Big Boss”, for his imposing personality, Stephen Keshi’s Nations Cup romance spans an amazing 31 years and 10 tournaments. The former Nigeria captain, now manager of the Super Eagles, will be making his fifth appearance as a Nations Cup coach – going twice, as his country’s assistant trainer, at the 2000 […]

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