Professor Ronnie Schloss, the Chief Operating Officer of the PSL, and Peter Mancer, head of PSL marketing, visited Namibia on the invitation of the NPL and exchanged ideas about the formation of a professional soccer league with Namibian soccer administrators.
Mabos Vries of the NPL said that the visit was aimed at exploring ways to strengthen cooperation between the PSL and the NPL.
“The PSL is the richest league on the continent with considerable resources in terms of human capital, facilities, systems and finance, which could be of benefit to the NPL and football in Namibia in general,” Vries said.
“The NPL has ambitious plans to introduce professional football, improve marketing and communications, enhance the technical quality of football, develop suitable infrastructure, and build the brand. We believe that this process can be accelerated through strategic partnerships with local and international institutions such as the PSL,” he added.
Schloss told the Namibians that South Africa had managed to turn the PSL around from a loss-making company into a thriving business over the past five years.
“We were R50 million in the red, but turned the business around through a strong marketing team and the enthusiasm of our people.
“Five years ago rugby and cricket were the top sport brands in South Africa, but now soccer is way ahead of them,” he said.
“We managed to change the image of soccer and regained the confidence of our sponsors. If they see there is a product that is respected, they will join in, but they will be wary to become a part of it if they see an organisation that is involved in conflict,” he said.
“We improved the administration of the PSL, while the behaviour of the clubs and the spectators also improved. There have been no major incidents of crowd trouble over the past three years and now soccer is an attractive pastime for families and children as well. If you can achieve that, then you are on the right track,” he added.