Portia Modise is about to open a soccer academy for young athletes. The former soccer player is ‘a living legend in African football, the only player to score more than 100 international goals in the beautiful game’ says W24. She was also recently appointed as an ambassador to FIFA Women’s World cup.
‘It feels great that I’ve been recognised by the big house of football that is FIFA, the mother of football.’
With this appointment, Modise will be joining some of the biggest names in international football. This year the Banyana Banyana team participated in the world cup for the first time. Modise’s role in the history of soccer in South Africa is far from over as she intends to keep influencing women’s soccer.
After playing for 15 years for the Banyana Banyana, Modise retired back in 2015. She has been outspoken about the struggles of combining womanhood and soccer before saying that due to the pay gap, female soccer players can’t lead the same life as their male counterparts.
‘When you look at amajita (guys) that are playing football, when they are done training, they get to their cars and go home. They have families. They have kids. I mean, nathi (we) as girls also want that life. We also have those ambitions and that is why we chose a football career. But we can’t have that life because we are not treated with the same respect,’ says Modise.
According to W24 Portia’s main focus as a FIFA ambassador is to see the sport treated with the respect the men’s game receives. ‘The women’s side is not paid the same but we’re also playing for the national team,’ she says. The former player has for many years called for women to be paid better.
The academy will be located in Johannesburg and is intended to present a better opportunity for female soccer players and reduce the gap current gap between men and women in the industry.
‘I’m happy I can give youngsters from around my ‘hood an opportunity to do something they love,’
Modise’s dream goes beyond the coaching of young athletes, one day she hopes to be a coach of the premier soccer league.
‘I want to break that chain of not seeing female coaches leading teams in the Premier Soccer League.’
We are so here for Portia Modise and her dream to give young woman in South Africa the opportunity to pursue their soccer dream.