Manyama makes us all proud to be Alexandrians, says the ANLFA

Secretary-general of the Alex Northrand LFA Mafika Morajane heaps praise on Lebogang Manyama for being crowned Footballer of the Year. Photo: Zanele Siso of Zanephoto


The Alexandra Northrand Local Football Association (ANLFA) is on cloud nine following the news that one of their own products has made history by being the first player from the township to be crowned Absa Premiership Footballer of the Year.

Lebogang Manyama, the skipper of Cape Town City FC which came close to making history by annexing the premiership in their maiden season, swept the boards at the glittering #PSLAwards held at the Sandton Convention Centre on 10 July.

Read: Manyama a big winner at #PSLAwards

Manyama, a resident of Alexandra who cut his football teeth while playing for Sheffield United in the LFA at the age of 14, and competing against the likes of Mpho ‘Bibo’ Makola, Patrick Phungwayo and Joseph ‘Tight’ Malongoane, was crowned Footballer of the Year, Players Player of the Year and Top Goal Scorer.

Secretary-general of the association Mafika Morajane described Manyama as a highly talented young footballer whose rise to football stardom came as no surprise.

“I remember him at age 14 when he used to show his peers his heels as he dashed to score the many goals he did during his days at the LFA, playing against the likes of Makola, Phungwayo and Malongoane, all of Blackpool then,” Morajane said.

“We would like, as the Alexandra Northrand LFA, to take our hats off to Manyama. He has made all of us proud as the people who produced him. Lebogang has given us reason to walk tall and proud of being Alexandrians. We’re now inspired to produce many more Manyamas of the future.”

Read: Cape Town City’s Lebogang Manyama leads the scoring pack with 12 goals

Morajane though had one important message for Manyama and urged him not to let the accolades go to his head but to remain grounded.

Bluebirds Ladies coach Malvin Khumalo, whose team plies its trade in the Sasol Women’s League which is an equivalent of the Absa Premiership for women’s football, was among those who wished Manyama more success in future. “I want to say to him he must treat these accolades as just some of the many more to come and aspire to work even harder to achieve more,” he said.

“We congratulate our local hero, for being a role model to many young football hopefuls in Alex that no matter where you come from, you can achieve your dreams. Well done Lebo, you’re a true inspiration for our youngsters.”

Sibusiso ‘Cosmos’ Zwane of the Alex High School Soccer Tournament, himself a legend of the game at Jomo Cosmos, said he was proud of Manyama for being the first ‘big achiever’ from Alex.

Read: I will walk tall and victorious, says Manyama

“Manyama has shown us all that it can be done and has thereby changed people’s perceptions about the township,” said Zwane.

He added that Manyama’s achievements should serve to inspire young Alex footballers that if they work hard, show dedication and determination, it pays handsomely as Manyama also comes from the same background as them. “He’s now their shining star to follow.”

Sipho Siso

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