‘SAFA’s Women’s National Football League #SNWL Needs Companies On Board’ – SA Footballer Noko Matlou By Cheryl Roberts

24 May

noko matlou

Veteran footballer Noko Matlou in August 2019 got another football dream of hers realised when she got to play in South Africa’s inaugural women’s football national league.

Not only did Noko Matlou, a former ‘African Woman Footballer of the Year’, play in the 12 team national league, she also scored goals and, when the national league stopped as #LockdownSA kicked in, Noko Matlou was a top three goalscorer in the #SNWL.

The SA football international changed teams and left her Sasol League team, Ma-Indies to join Limpopo-based First Touch and play in the national league, a first for South African women’s football. ‘I really enjoyed myself in the national league, playing for First Touch. I enjoyed creating and scoring goals. It shows if you work hard, things are easy
hahahaha…… I scored 18 goals and I have 28 assists,’ says Noko.
Although First touch was a consistent top five team throughout the league, Noko Matlou says her team First Touch could have performed much better and been rewarded with better results. ‘I’m not really satisfied with our team’s performance because I think in some of the games, we should have done much better and I think we should work more on our defending as a team, because during crucial times we conceded goals that we shouldn’t have.’

Asked if she encountered a tough team, Noko Matlou says ‘Not really because I scored against all teams in the SNWL.’
One disadvantage of playing in a national league was that the #SNWL was not a pro league. Most national league teams were not sponsored and had to rely on grants from SAFA to play in and survive the inaugural season of the #SNWL. For a full-time footballer like Noko Matlou, this didn’t go down well. Sonewhere in the season, Noko Matlou thought of getting a full-time job and playing football part-time.
Now, observing the first season of South Africa’s national women’s football league, Noko Matlou is of the opinion that players should get a wage or salary and get paid for playing football. Now Noko is calling for ‘companies to come on board so that the players can put food on the table.’

Although a footballer in her 30’s, Noko Matlou will be playing another season and more in the national league. But she wants it to be sponsored and players to be paid.

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