Menu

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

tcf - filbertway

News

Tcf TV

Shop

Twitter

As featured on NewsNow: Leicester City News

 
 
  Embed from Getty Images


NEWSDESK LATEST



 


 

 

 

 

    

 

 

The unknown history of Leicester City footballers in Apartheid South Africa

DATE: 01.09.2017 - THE CUNNING FOX - NEWSDESK

 

Back in 1959 the NFL was founded as the first professional football league in South Africa. The import of players from Britain, Germany and Greece became an integral part of everything.

Not only players were imported, but also managers and coaches. The NFL was sponsored by the large companies, one was Coca Cola, they even had a cup named after them, taking place in Apartheid South Africa.

A number of both national and club teams toured South Africa. Leicester City travelled the country in 1961, just a few days after being defeated in the FA Cup final by Tottenham.

This happened, despite South Africa being sanctioned by FIFA as they could not tolerate national teams segregated by skin colours. The NFL was an "all white" league, with the other skin colours having other foundations and leagues.

Leicester City will for always be the team that was the first to play a team from the NFL, when they played Durban City, on the 27th of May 1961, at a place called Kingsmead. The game ended in a 2-0 win for City

City later on the tour played a combined Transval team at the Rand Stadium in Johannesburg. This is today and was then also the home stadium of famous South African football club Kaiser Chiefs.
 

Embed from Getty Images k


The tour also included a visit to Rhodesia, that today as we all know is known as Zimbabwe. Leicester City played the national team and won the game 4-3.

You can find results and a small note in the latest "fossils & foxes" book describing the tour as relaxed, but not much said on why they went on a tour to Apartheid South Africa, a country sanctioned by FIFA at the time, not allowed to play in the World Cup.

Many English clubs toured South Africa during the early 60's, and played the teams of the NFL, and as the story goes on, a lot of players also moved down there to play professionally for the clubs that described the imports influence as vital for the league excistence.

Former England international Peter Withe, started his professional life in football in the NFL, and he never made any secret of the fact that he moved down there in early years, because he couldn't find a club in Britain.

Connections made it possible to play as a professional. Port Elizabeth City became his first club in the NFL. Later he played for Arcadia Shepherds, and build up a reputation as a good goalscorer.

Former Wolverhampton and Leicester player Derek Dougan played as a guest for Arcadia, and during those few games he partnered Withe, that was recomended by Dougan, and later the two became team mates at Wolves.

Withe was one of the so called "late bloomers" in football. Before he won the league with Aston Villa and Nottingham Forest, and got his caps for England, he played a number of seasons in the NFL.
 

Embed from Getty Images k


Roy Hodgson, was before taking over the England job, confronted with his life as a professional in South Africa. He said it was all for footballing reasons. As we know Hodgson, he never talked much about his only professional adventure as a player, playing for Pretoria based Berea Park.

Other more profiled players such as Ian St John, well known from his days at Liverpool and Johnny Haynes, the Fulham and England legend, both had spells in the NFL.

Johnny Byrne who played for England and West Ham never came back, after establishing himself as one of the best players in the NFL and later a legendary manager in South African football.

Frank McLintock and Gordon Banks are two former Leicester City players that late in their career had short spells at Cape Town based Hellenic FC, joining up with their former teammate at Arsenal and Stoke, forward George Eastham.

Banks was one of a number of former "Boys of 66" to join up, for longer and shorter spells. Bobby Charlton, Geoff Hurst, Alan Ball, Bobby Moore and Roger Hunt all had spells in the NFL, and they attracted large crowds in this "all white" league.

The Cape Town clubs were popular, with many british players. In the best years of the league almost nine players at each club were imports. More than 150 players from the UK had moved down to the NFL, some was not given permission by family to go, but some did.

To play football under such a regime, and as history has told us, Nelson Mandela prisoned for life during the time.

The NFL folded in 1977, with the "all white" skin rule being challenged by certain clubs, introducing black players with Vincent Julius being the first playing for Arcadia Shepherds.

This was for many "white skinned" players a chance to "earn a living" late in their careers, and for those not able to make it in the UK. Some made the journey for just a game or two, while others stayed for the rest of their lives, doing well,  coaching football.

Players were not doing anything illegal as they were allowed to play, but on the ethical side of the matter, they made a choice few would understand today.

Football in general and many of the foreign imports that stayed on as managers and teachers of football, has later been given credit for being pioneers, showing that segregation is not needed in this type of game, and has no place in the world of football.

Apartheid came to an end in the early 90's, with South Africa again being allowed to participate in international football.

To read more about all players in the NFL and stories of the "All White" football league, enter here

You can watch NFL games at our "retrotv" channel, and don't miss the latest from "city-extra" and "tcfone".. 


All season stats, enter here,

All the latest about Leicester City on Twitter, enter here


More from  tcf - filbertway 

k

tcf - filbertway

 

 


TCF FILBERTWAY - LEICESTER CITY WEBZINE

FOLLOWING LEICESTER CITY EVERY HOUR OF THE DAY
 


CONTACT US

E-MAIL, CLICK HERE
 

ADVERTISING SPACE

WE OFFER A NUMBER OF SOLUTIONS ON ADVERTISING AND
LINKS, CONTACT US FOR PRICING AND PLACEMENT
 

WHO WE WORK WITH

MAJOR PUBLISHING PARTNERS

| PERFORM | ICS MEDIA GROUP | NEWS NOW | AMAZON |

COPYRIGHT 2005 - 2017 FILBERTWAY. ALL RIGHTS RESERVERD

 

web
analytics

mmmmmmmmmm

 

 

mm