Banyana Banyana coach Desiree Ellis encouraged to see more women players moving abroad


Striker Ode Fulutudilu recently signed for Malaga in Spain and versatile midfielder Leandra Smeda joined Swedish Damallsvenskan outfit Vittsjö GIK after spending some time in Lithuania, where she played in the Women’s UEFA Champions League.

Thembi Kgatlana and Linda Motlhalo last year linked up with Banyana captain Janine van Wyk at US side Houston Dash, while Refiloe Jane and Rhoda Mulaudzi were snapped up by Australian club Canberra United.

“This is certainly good news for women’s football in South Africa to have players make a move abroad as this will most certainly benefit Banyana Banyana. If you look at nations like Nigeria and Cameroon, most of their players are abroad and that is why they consistenly qualify for big tournaments, and we should also do the same,” Ellis told SAFA's website.

“We are extremely proud that Ode has made a move to Spain, and Leandra to Sweden where they will have an even better opportunity to improve on their games. These are some of the good leagues for women’s football and we are confident they will do well. This is a bonus as this happens in the World Cup year, and we believe this will open doors for other players to be spotted.”