: a child prodigy; also : one who succeeds in a competitive or highly difficult field or profession at an early age
: someone who achieves success or shows great talent at a young age
The transition from playground hero to national superstar is one that only a lucky few get to undergo & complete; child prodigies can be found in every crevice of our beautiful country, yet one does not always get to witness a child prodigy excel and show signs of great promise at a tender age, as coaches are often under pressure to get immediate results and habitually punt for more seasoned professionals, as they seek to attain some much needed job security. Football remains one of the greatest tests of talent in the modern age; a field where hard work beats talent, when talent refuses to work hard, and having talent alone is not enough to truly flourish in the craft.
With measured development and sound off-field guidance, a wunderkind can develop into an elite level footballer with the gifts and aptitude to excel as a professional; wunderkinder do not always become the true stars that their potential levels would have suggested they’d develop into, yet that will not hinder us from watching the best u/23 lads in the game and giving you an informative, enlightening and educational scouting report on some of the best young footballers in the land.
DoB: January 12th, 1995 (21)
PoB: Tembisa, Ekurhuleni; Gauteng
Caps & Goals: N/A | South African u/20 & u/23 International
Position/s: Stopper Defender, Cover Defender, Fullback, Ball-Winning Midfielder, Anchorman (Right/Centre)
Preferred Foot: Right
Height: 1. 81m
Club: Mamelodi Sundowns Football Club
Club Jersey No: #32
Market Value: R 383 250
Career Club Record: 4 Games
Development Academies: Tswelopele School (TS) Academy | Life Supers | Winners Park FC | Moroka Swallows FC| | Leruma United FC | Mamelodi Sundowns FC
Previous Club: Highlands Park Football Club, On Loan (2015-16)
The Scouting Report
Mental: Young footballers in defensive positions are easier to spot when they are out of their depth, simply due to the sheer speed of the game and the need for one to be up to the pace in order to compete and not look like a fish fresh out of water; composure is an essential intangible trait for a young player to possess if they seek to establish themselves in the game at an early age, Madisha Motjeka keeps a cool level head on the field and displays a maturity beyond his years, affording him the extra confidence to do his job and display his skills at any level. The drive to succeed and attain a positive result for the team is largely underrated in modern football, where “hero-ball” has slowly overshadowed the team ethos we once held so dear; a determined footballer like Madisha is an asset worth having, his drive to succeed is contagious and can often lead to the team overcoming a deficit or defying the odds. A natural born leader, Madisha Motjeka constantly looks to motivate his teammates and inspire those around him to reach their optimal levels; having skippered the South African u/20 side with aplomb, Motjeka has gradually established himself as a hot prospect with a high potential ceiling and the mentality to match.
Physical: The frantic pace of modern football, and the tactical enhancements those improvements brought forth, have necessitated the added incentive for coaches to punt for defenders who have the propensity to defend first, and master that facet of the game, before looking to help start things off offensively. Madisha Motjeka is blessed with great strength on the ball, and is able to hold off his opponent, while using his strength to win his challenges and nullify opposing attackers. An athletic footballer with a good build that is well conditioned for the more physical aspect of the game, Madisha is able to use his frame and combine it with a good leap off the group to compete as well in the air, as he does on the ground. As a taller player, for your prototype Mzansi footballer, one would not expect Motjeka to have a good turn of pace, but his mobility underpins his ability to cover good ground and get into great positions to avert danger. For a sturdily build footballer with a more imposing frame, Motjeka is gifted with good agility, which allows him to manoeuvre his body into position to make timely interceptions or intervene even when the angles don’t seem to favour him.
Technical: Well rounded defenders with a defence first approach to the game are fast becoming a hot commodity in the game; Motjeka Madisha fits that bill, by bringing so many tangible facets and skill sets that supplement his all-round game, “Ace” is a handy defender who wins his fair share of aerial battles and habitually makes it hard for opponents to get the better of him in the air, while being well versed in the art of marking opponents tightly and winning the ball via well timed interceptions and tackles. Motjeka has been earmarked as a hot defensive prospect for many just reasons, yet his ability to contribute on the offensive side of the ball, with his ball retention and overall distribution abilities, make him an added bonus for a side that looks to play from the back, and keep hold of the ball a lot more. The Tembisa born versatile defender is also capable of popping up with the odd goal, as witnessed in the 2015 12-Nations in Russia, where he was rewarded with the Player of the Tournament Award for leading South Africa’s u/20 side to Gold with his commanding displays and handy 3 goals.
Comparable To… Aaron “Mbazo” Mokoena (5/5 Tsamaya’s)
Written By Mallele Chidi Petje III (@MCPeTjeIII)