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Former Stars players reunite

By Masilo Malakwane

QWAQWA – Former Free State Stars players have embarked on an initiative to identify, developing and nurturing new soccer talent in QwaQwa.

These former players which include Mamelodi Sundowns coach Steve ‘Koloi’  Komphela, Serame ‘Rhee’ Letsoaka, David Vilakazi, Edward ‘Magic’ Salemane, John Tlale, Fees Moloi, Moses Moloi, Aristedes Zaza, Mpho ‘Amin’ Lefatle, Emmanuel Phamotse, Nkoko Malefane and Chincha Pekeshe.

They all began their football career in QwaQwa in the 80’s and now they aim to revitalize the standard of local football by identifying talents.

In an interview with this publication at their reunion party hosted by businesswoman Moipone Titi in Elite, Komphela emphasised that education and football are like two sides of a coin.

“We should continue encouraging our kids to persevere in sport as it creates heroes.”

He says his dream is to develop more talents in this area which made him who he is today.

Komphela, who once worked as a teacher in QwaQwa, also thanked the founder of  Free State Stars Football Club, the late Mike Mokoena for affording him a platform to become a world-renowned footballer with education.

Erstwhile Free State Stars captain Letsoaka, who now works for FIFA in the African continent to produce technical directors, said their success in the game of football was enhanced by education.

“Our aim is to form an organization that would work hand in hand with schools to identify and make recommendations in discovering new athletes and by doing that, QwaQwa should have soccer games at least every week,” Letsoaka said.

Former goalkeeper, Tlale who now owns a construction company in Virginia, said he was saddened to see Free State Stars relegated from elite league, but hoped it will bounce back.

He also paid tribute to Mokoena, who played a pivotal role in their footballing careers hence they managed to survive life post-football.

Meanwhile, Titi applauded these ex-players’ vision of ploughing back to the community.

“We appreciate their efforts and we will support them in ensuring that their vision becomes a success,” Titi said.