The legendary Jomo Sono has questioned the hunger and desire of Premier Soccer League (PSL) stars as South Africa’s topflight won’t have any representative at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

The World Cup is set to get underway in three days, with the hosts Qatar taking on Ecuador on Sunday at the Al Bayt Stadium, and Sono has expressed his concerns on the lack of a burning desire by players in the DStv Premiership and second division.

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“Eish, it’s a shame,” said Sono when asked about the zero PSL representation at the 2022 World Cup.

The PSL has built a reputation as one of the top leagues in Africa, but Sono believes the standards of football in SA are below-par.

Sono further explained why Bafana Bafana failed to qualify for the World Cup, insisting that the current crop of SA players also don’t have the x-factor to play in major international tournaments and compete in overseas leagues.

“We need to sit down as football people and ask ourselves why we are not qualifying. We get beaten in COSAFA and everywhere; we need to sit down as a country and say where we go wrong,” added Sono.

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“As I said, I even gave an example in 1996, we were close to 97% of players competing overseas; why are we no longer producing players with the capabilities to play abroad? Instead, these players come back home.

“Yes, because there is money in the DStv Premiership, but where is the hunger to play in the World Cup? It means so much to represent your nation.

“I represented the country at the World Cup and Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) and understand the feeling. I hope the upcoming generation understands that and go play abroad.”

Orlando Pirates goalkeeper Richard Ofori was the PSL’s last hope at the upcoming World Cup, but the Ghana netminder was ruled out after picking up a knee injury.

However, Jomo Sono says it is vital to address the lack of quality in Bafana Bafana and the decline of SA football rather than foreigners in the PSL.

“Firstly, let’s talk about the country; it would have been nice if we were there [World Cup in Qatar],” he declared.

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“It’s a shame that South Africa is not there. I would not love to talk about other countries; whether they are there or not, I really do not care. My interest is with South Africans, and we are not at the World Cup.”

Bafana are set to host Mozambique on Thursday in an international friendly at Mbombela Stadium (20:00 and take on Angola on Sunday at the same venue on the same day as the opening game of the World Cup.

Categories: Sport

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