South African football has been on the cusp of a much needed resurgence in recent years, and much of that can be attributed to a more measured youth development approach at a few ABSA Premiership sides; we are beginning to reap the rewards, as a holistic football fraternity, through the influx of gifted young footballers on display at the elite level, on any given match day. While the MultiChoice Diski Challenge serves a great purpose, in providing opportunities for younger players to grow, we still need our best young talent playing at the highest level, against the best local players, if we truly seek to afford them with the maximal opportunities to flourish as fledglings.
The more opportunities young players get, to play quality minutes, at a young age, the better off for them, and us as fans, in the long run; the 2017/18 ABSA Premiership season was bound to bring changes, as teams repositioned themselves to fight the dominance of Mamelodi Sundowns, or compete with the ever improving force that is BidVest Wits, who now dominate the landscape, and rightfully so.
‘Downs used a more cavalier approach, and bought the best talent, whatever the price, before adapting a more balanced model, centered around finding value in younger players and up selling in the future. Wits, on the other hand, built a dominant team on a foundation of young players, developed through their own academy, or roped in through their extensive scouting networks; the Wits model, is one SuperSport United had used for a decade, and seemed to temporarily abandon, after they failed to replicate the success of the era before.
In all the dominance we see locally, or have seen sustained in the recent past, youth development is deeply rooted therein, which brings us to the GSV 20; a comprehensive list of the Best 20, Under 20 Players, you may have the opportunity to watch shine in the ABSA Premiership this season, sourced for your enjoyment, by our Talent Scout, Your Uncle Bob. Enjoy!
Full Name: Sipho Percevale Mbule
DoB: March 22nd, 1998 (19)
PoB: Bethlehem; Free State
Position/s: BWM, DLP, B2BM
Preferred Foot: Left
Height: 1, 77m
Current Club: SuperSport United Football Club
Jersey Number: 24
Football Pedigree: Harmony Sports Academy, Orlando Pirates Youth Team, SuperSport United Youth Team
National Team: South African U/20 International
PSL Record: 5 Games