Safa signs deal with Shield that can help ‘close the gender pay gap’

24 July 2023 - 12:45
By Marc Strydom
South African Football Association CEO Lydia Monyepao. File photo.
Image: Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images South African Football Association CEO Lydia Monyepao. File photo.

The South African Football Association (Safa) has announced a five-year sponsorship with deodorant brand Shield, which has an emphasis on women's football.

Safa CEO Lydia Monyepao said the partnership with the Unilever South Africa-owned brand can help address the gender pay gap in the sport.

“Shield has proudly partnered with Safa for the next five years in line with the intention to bring in more sponsors for not just the association, but also the South African senior women’s national team, Banyana Banyana,” Safa said in a statement.

“Shield was recently announced as one of the official sponsor of the 2023 Fifa Women’s World Cup.

Monyepao said the sponsorship has an emphasis on women's football.

“Bringing more corporate sponsors on board, especially in the women’s game, will assist us in our efforts to close the gender pay parity gap and also increase opportunities for Banyana Banyana to secure better opposition to remain competitive globally,” she was quoted as saying.

“We also believe the association with Unilever SA comes at the perfect time when we are bidding to host the Fifa Women’s World Cup in 2027. Should our dream become a reality, we are confident this partnership will grow bigger and stronger, with women’s football in this country ultimately the biggest winner.”

This follows Safa last week appointing Romaney Pinnock as head of women's football.

Banyana are competing at the World Cup in New Zealand and Australia where they kicked off with a brave and unfortunate 2-1 defeat to Sweden on Sunday.

They meet Argentina in their next group G game on Friday (2am SA time) and Italy on August 2.