Steve Komphela on showboating: 'No rule says a player can't step over the ball'
Steve Komphela has entered the debate over showboating - and unlike his colleague Pitso Mosimane he sees a place for it in South African football.
Last month Mamelodi Sundowns coach Mosimane was furious when Orlando Pirates’ Fortune Makaringe pulled off a trick in their match at the Orlando Stadium, describing it as disrespectful.
It reignited the debate about whether performing tricks during a match is part of local football culture or should be discouraged - as is the case in major footballing countries.
“We don’t tell them to get on the ball and do whatever, but it’s the nature of South African players to do that. You cannot stifle it because it also not against the Fifa rules and regulations,” said the Lamontville Golden Arrows coach, whose own player Ntsako Makhubela is full of tricks.
“There is no rule that says a player cannot step over the ball and all that. For as long as the rule allows, you cannot put a stop as a coach, even though our counterparts across the world will tell you there is an element of disrespect. That's how they coin it.
"There is also fair play - when someone goes down, you have to kick the ball out. Those are unwritten rules. With us, we allow them to enjoy the game,” said Komphela, adding that showmanship was part of local football culture.
“The profile of a nation is seen in their sport. The profile of South Africa is that there are many people who enjoy that kind of game, so many of your players will show that. There is no way you can stand up against something that is in their blood.”
He also said it was often a useful ploy on the pitch. “A trick can ignite the team, it gives confidence and energy, it lifts the player. It even irritates the opposition.
“As long as it adds something, I don’t have a problem with it."