Thembinkosi Sekgaphane
Phakaaathi Digital Administrator
1 minute read
5 Sep 2019
1:25 pm

TBT: Vasili Sofiadellis       

Thembinkosi Sekgaphane

In this week’s instalment of Throwback Thursday, former Bloemfontein Celtic forward Vasili Sofiadellis speaks about how his love for football saw him spending time in the township, just after apartheid was abolished.

20 April 2003, ABSA Cup ,Bloemfontein Celtic v Sundowns at Seisa Ramabodu Stadium in Bloemfontein, South Africa. Isaac Shai and Vasili Sofiadellis in action Photo Credit: © Tertius PickardGallo Images

Growing up in Bloemfontein during the apartheid era, South Africans had a lot of preconceived notions about each other especially those from different ethnic groups.

Sofiadellis’ love for football drew him to follow the lives of football figures in his hometown like Ntate Petrus Molemela and finally playing for Siwelele at the age of 15 was a dream come true.

“My parents were a bit worried at times when I had to drive into the township. They would be nervous and I didn’t know what to expect because I didn’t know what would happen but it was always exciting for me. This was back in 1995 just after apartheid was over,” Sofiadellis explained.

“We all went to Molemela hotel in Bloemfontein a night before each game and we would all be in one room pretty much, I would be welcomed even though I was slightly nervous. The camaraderie between us as players made me feel like part of the team and I learned a lot from culture’s perspective by spending nights in the township and chatting with friends and making jokes with teammates who were now friends.”

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