Lack of exposure killing women's football
Posted: 11 July 2018 Time: 18:30
Banyana Banyana player Leandra Smeda is hoping more women players can secure contracts abroad because many of them are faced with many challenges locally.
Smeda recently signed a contract with Lithuanian side Gintra Universitetas, a university team that plays in a professional women’s league.
Smeda says women footballers struggle financially and many of them have to get jobs elsewhere to put food on the table, while others are students.
There’s a lack of exposure for South Africa’s women footballers, which makes life even more difficult for them to make it in the game.
The sad reality is that some of the country’s most talented players will never get to play abroad and earn a decent salary.
“It’s hard because some of the players only get paid when they get called up to the national team. Not a lot of them work like in a full-time job. Most of the players in the squad are students as well. It’s hard for female footballers not having a professional league, so they have to find other work to put food on the table,” Smeda tells KickOff.com.
“They can’t just rely on football and focus on football, which is what they love. Also there’s a lack of exposure. Our games don’t get televised as much and the team is not really active, unless there’s a year when a big tournament is playing. That also does not help in getting our players exposed to the world where scouts can see us. Hopefully we will see more players playing.”