TTM contemplate offer to play at Royal Bafokeng Stadium white elephant

Royal Bafokeng Stadium is ready to host PSL matches "tomorrow".
Royal Bafokeng Stadium is ready to host PSL matches "tomorrow".
Image: Gallo Images

Royal Bafokeng Sports (RBS) are looking for a sports tenant from the Premier Soccer League (PSL) or the GladAfrica Championship to use their facilities in the forthcoming football season.

The Royal Marang Hotel‚ which hosted England during the 2010 Fifa World Cup and later now-defunct Premier League club Platinum Stars‚ and the Royal Bafokeng Stadium are underutilised because there is no PSL or National First Division (NFD) club in the North West.

RBS sports consultant Emile Smith said a few clubs in the PSL and NFD have shown interest in making use of their facilities for the upcoming season but no deal has been concluded yet.

“RBS is looking for a sports tenant who will play their home matches at the Royal Bafokeng Stadium‚” said Smith.

“We are looking at a club that will use our training grounds‚ high performance facilities and hotel facilities at Royal Marang. A few teams have shown interest in making use of our facilities but talks are in their infancy.

"We are targeting to have agreements in place before the start of the coming football season. The team that will be working with us will have access to the wealth of talent in the North West.”

Smith declined to mention names‚ but TimesLive has independently established that Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila (TTM) and NFD side JDR Stars are among the teams that are talking to RBS.

TTM‚ whose officials have already done a site inspection of the RBS facilities in Rustenburg‚ will be playing in the PSL next season after owner Masala Mulaudzi bought the status of Bidvest Wits.

“A PSL team will be first prize for us but even a team in the GladAfrica Championship will also suit our needs‚” Smith said.

“It has been about three years since we haven’t had a soccer team to use that stadium as an official venue. We are definitely looking for a team to be based here for the upcoming season.

“We sent out email communication to the South African Football Association (Safa) and to a number of clubs inviting them to come and view our facility and once they have done that we will have discussions. What we are trying to do is to look at the entire ecosystem because we have the infrastructure.

“We are not looking for a team to come in and play their games in the stadium‚ and [then] have no relationship. We want to build a relationship with them with regards to our academy‚ women’s football and using our hotel infrastructure‚ high performance infrastructure and the stadium in itself.”

TTM PRO Tshidino Ndou confirmed that the club are talking to RBS said the team will not be relocating to the North West.

“Using Royal Bafokeng Stadium next season is still under discussion. We are not there but there is a possibility because we are getting some sponsorship.

“Our home ground is Thohoyandou Stadium but our alternative venues are being discussed. Even FNB Stadium and Loftus are in the picture because we want to grow the brand as a national brand. It is not like the team is being sold to Royal Bafokeng‚ no.”

Royal Marang Hotel is a much sought-after facility by PSL clubs and recently Mamelodi Sundowns held their mini-camp in Rustenburg before they entered the bio-bubble to complete the 2019-20 season.