Engen KO: What they said…

The 2010 edition of the Engen Knockout has received some great praise from many of those involved in the tournament.

Golden Arrows emerged victorious after the two days of enterprising football after beating Junior Aces in the final. Defending champions AmaZulu finished at position 8 in the round robin format played tournament.

Roger Palmgren, Tournament Director of the Engen Under-17 Knockout Challenge and AmaZulu Director of Sports said: “The level of talent in the competition was higher than I expected which is exciting. Tournaments like this one are very important in the development of these players. It’s something for the clubs to look forward to and set their goals around.”

South Africa’s Under-20 coach Khabo Zondo made an appearance at the tournament. The ‘Amajita’ coach lauded the event for identifying talent identification.

“We have been failing in development (in the country). There is no way players can do well when they are not brought through the ranks. We have this thing in the country of calling 25-year-olds youngsters that is not a youngster it’s a man.

“Other countries are bringing in players when they are 17 or 18 years-old into the national team which we are not doing. This tournament will help us in solving some of those problems,” Zondo said.

Arrows coach Siyabonga Khanyile was delighted for his team’s achievement.

“I am very happy that we won, we have been waiting for something like this for a while. We have played in two previous development tournaments abroad but have never won, this is the first time we have won something like this and I am very happy,” he said.

Head Selector Duncan Crowie was impressed with the level of talent in the tournament.

“The standard has definitely improved as a whole, something that is expected in the number one Under-17 tournament in South Africa,” said the former Santos goal-poacher.

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