SuperSport United assistant coach Andre Arendse has insisted that developing their own players at SuperSport United is something that they take pride in and they will continue to do it.
Apart from being the first team to win the league title in three consecutive years, SuperSport United are known for developing young players from their academy. Matsatsantsa under the leadership of Kwanele Kopo have produced the likes of Kamohelo Mokotjo who moved overseas when he was a teenager, Ronwen Williams and Teboho Mokoena just to mention a few.
Recently, the Tshwane club have promoted Keagan Johannes, Luke Fleurs and Thapelo Maseko, all of whom who were with their DDC team two seasons ago. These youngsters have been linked with a move away from Matsatsantsa after impressive performances in the first team. Arendse, who played for SuperSport United in 2006 says Matsatsantsa have placed a lot of weight in developing players from a very young age.
“When it comes to using our development players, a lot is not something that’s very new to the setup at SuperSport United. We place a lot of emphasis as a club on developing our young players who come in through the ranks and we do this from a very early age. We start spotting them from the age of 10,11,12 years already, Arendse told ThisIsFootball.Africa.
“We have the skills here within the club from the educational components all the way through to the coaching methods and the personal development platforms. These factors have always been within the club, We take great pride in that process.
“You go through the list of players that have come through the ranks and you will see that they have moved on to phenomenal heights in their own careers. Ronwen Williams is one of those, Kermit Erasmus is another and most recently we moved on Teboho Mokoena and Aubrey Modiba and players like that who have come to the club in the early period of their careers and we developed them.
The 55-year-old added that the youngsters they’ve been using have not let them team down hence they haven’t been shy about promoting their youngsters.
“We haven’t shyed away from playing these young players in the first team. Not a single one of them has led the team down. They’ve really worked their socks off to keep their places in the team,” he concluded.
However, these academy graduates are unlikely to stay for many seasons at SuperSport, with the club CEO Stan Matthews stating publicly that selling players is part of the funding model that the club is based on.