South Africa is for all who live in it. It’s only fair for some of us who live in it to raise our concerns with regard to our hosting of the biggest show piece in the globe, come 2010. My concerns do not make me less a South African, nor unpatriotic.
I recently visited the host city, Rustenburg. Well I expected to see something that would say to me, that Rustenburg is a host city. Maybe I expected to find a billboard that said, "Welcome to the 2010 host City". Or simply something you know. I walked around town, nothing. Well I was hoping to see Zakumi at least somewhere in the inner city; well He was no-wher to be found. I stand to be corrected though.
My trip took me to Phokeng, where the stadium itself is situated. Well there was nothing to say something about the world cup. All that draws attention is the fact that even from far, you can see that construction is taking place at the stadium, and it looks like all is smooth sailing in that regard.
Then again, it hit me, maybe, just maybe I expected too much.
I think it’s not too early to start creating the hype around 2010. People should start talking about the showpiece itself. We do not seem like we excited to host the 2010 world cup. Its Africans turn and the Africans seem to be simply waiting for Kickoff, nothing more.
All I am saying is that I am greatly concerned about the marketing of the world cup here at home. For instance, people should start understanding as to how much one needs to safe to attend at least a game during 2010.What if I am in Phokeng and would like to see a team that will be playing in the other Host City? We need to being visible, to ourselves, that we the host country.
I was hoping that Zakumi would do a bit of advertising for 2010, not that I expected him to make sure that there is the hype for 2010. We need to see Zakumi, let him go checkout host cities. Go to Schools, hospitals and all sorts of functions around the country. Whilst he (Zakumi) does that, our media should make sure they capture and [resent that moments to the soccer lovers, and every South Africans.
I understood we cannot do much marketing before the World Cup in Germany. But why are we so quiet. I remember well the hype in this country before the Cricket World Cup and the Rugby World Cups. So I know what I am talking about, before someone tells me that 2010 is still far. For us to have a successful showpiece, we need to get everybody on board.
South African soccer is lacking marketing big time. It shows with our national team, and lack of its following. The support in Bloemfontein is not an overnight success story.
Do we as South African love soccer? Or we simply like watching it on TV and talking all sorts of things about it afterwards? What should be done to create the hype around the country?
We need to do something, if we do not need FIFA to regret the decision to give us the right to host in 2010.
Baile (Diski2010 manager)