The importance of Varsity Football in building the stars of the future cannot be underestimate according to veteran football journalist and commentator Mark Gleeson.
(Pic via SuperSport)
Mark began his career at the age of 20 and was the founding editor of the well-known soccer magazine Kick Off. He has also been inducted into the South African Sports Journalism Hall of Fame.
The 59-year-old Gleeson shares his thoughts about Varsity Football and the role the competition plays in sports development.
"Playing in Varsity Football gives you a clear indication and a bit of assurance of what your future will be outside of sport.
"It's been great to see [how the competition] develop a good foundation and clear path, especially on the football side. A lot of players have been discovered in Varsity Football by PSL clubs [and to then] have professional careers in football and that is an inspiration."
Gleeson applauds the talent Varsity Football players have and shares a few pointers on what they can do in order to make it to the PSL.
"The main thing is to stick to your craft, remember these days PSL is such a strong physical game you need to be in optimum condition. So look after yourself. One would need to train as hard as they can because the physicality is so much more important these days.
“Often times it’s not the first and second time you get an opportunity to move up the ranks to get the break, it might take up four to five years.”
Players also need to work on the parts of their game that aren’t that strong, says Gleeson.
"To become a professional player you need talent, and often times that is God-given talent. Work on those things in particular that are weak in your game. So if you are one footed for example, work on the other foot. There are so many players in the DStv Premiership and Motsepe Foundation Championship that have that depth in both feet, so work on that so that it could be a massive advantage to your game."
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by Ayanda Frances Felem