Mr Itani “Vhanzheli” Munzhelele. Photo: Frank Mavhungu.
Although the team did not manage to gain automatic promotion to the DStv Premiership Division and could not manage to qualify for the promotional playoffs this season, the management of Venda Football Academy FC (VFA) are satisfied with the team’s performance.
The team have completed the season’s league programme in the fifth position with 44 points, 10 behind the league champions, Richards Bay FC.
Richards Bay are now preparing for a new life in the DStv Premiership Division, while the second- and third-placed sides, University of Pretoria FC and Cape Town All Stars, are gearing up for the promotional playoffs. They will be joined by the team from the DStv Premiership Division that finishes in the 15th spot.
VFA were among the top three teams on the log standings for the better part of the season and only dropped to the fifth position towards the end. During an interview with the chairman of VFA, Mr Itani Munzhelele, he said that he was satisfied with the team’s performance.
Munzhelele said that this had been their debut season in the league, and they had reason to celebrate their achievements. The expectations were raised that the team would qualify for the promotional playoffs or gain automatic promotion at the end of the season, but this unfortunately did not happen.
When asked when and where things had gone wrong, Munzhelele said that the players had become complacent along the way and ultimately lost their original fighting spirit. The team then lost several matches that they could have won convincingly. “Look, we have lost three home matches against Cape Town Spurs, Platinum City Rovers and TS Sporting,” he said.
According to him, the team would have finished on top of the log or qualified for promotional playoffs, had they managed to win those matches. Vhanzheli, as he is affectionately called, partially blames some of the experienced players who he said had not delivered according to his expectations. “We are generally satisfied with the team’s performance in the season under review,” he said.
The last two teams on the log standings, Jomo Cosmos and TS Sporting, have been relegated to the ABC Motsepe League.
Date:19 May 2022 - By: Frank Mavhungu
Frank is a Human Resources Manager at the Department of Public Works in Limpopo. He is the longest serving correspondent of the Mirror, having joined us at the end of 1990. He mainly writes sports reports and resides at Tsianda Village. In 2004, Frank won the National Castle League Award, an award for the best reporter in the SAB league in South Africa.