Minister of sport Nathi Mthethwa has joined SA fans congratulating Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies, who were on Friday night crowned the inaugural Caf Women’s Champions League champions.
Sundowns beat Ghanaian side Hasaacas Ladies 2-0 in the final at the June 30 Stadium in Cairo through a goal in each half by Chuene Morifi and Andisiwe Mgcoyi to become the first team to lift this trophy.
“This historic feat by Mamelodi Sundowns signals a welcomed turning point in the history of women’s football for our country,” Mthethwa said.
“My good wishes to Mamelodi Sundowns for this emphatic announcement of SA’s arrival at the top end of the women’s version of continental football. Theirs will unquestionably be a tough act to follow.
“We look forward to welcoming our champions back home and we say thank you to Banyana Ba Style for a victory that is set to inject a much-needed boost into women’s football in our country.”
Mthethwa was joined in congratulating Sundowns' women by SA Football Association (Safa) president Danny Jordaan.
“In the back of our minds we knew our ladies would do it because from the word go, they looked the most complete side. The national professional league, the Hollywoodbets Super League, has done wonders in improving the standard of women's football and more is to come,” Jordaan said.
“By finishing the entire tournament without conceding a goal shows the vast difference between our girls and the rest of the continent. They have set the bar and now need to maintain those lofty standards.
“Women's football in SA has been growing in leaps and bounds and Banyana Banyana set the tone this year by winning the Aisha Buhari Cup, beating the Super Falcons of Nigeria in their backyard.”
Banyana coach Desiree Ellis added her voice, saying she never doubted that Sundowns Ladies would bring the trophy home.
“Congratulations to Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies for conquering Africa. What a way of achieving it by going all the way without conceding a goal. Take a bow champions, you are truly history-makers,” Ellis said.
Banyana star striker Thembi Kgatlana also congratulated Sundowns Ladies.
“This is a huge step forward for women's football in our country. I watched this match throughout and at the end I was truly proud to be a South African.
“The Hollywoodbets Super League is proving to be a huge investment and results are there for all to see. It was the Buhari Cup and now this. These are exciting times,” Kgatlana said.