Cape Town – Thursday marks five years to the day since the 2010 Soccer World Cup kicked off in South Africa.
The tournament, despite Bafana Bafana’s early departure, remains one of the country’s finest sporting moments.
When Siphiwe Tshabalala rocketed his shot into the top right-hand corner to give Bafana a 1-0 lead over Mexico in the tournament opener, South Africa was on top of the world. That euphoria lasted 24 minutes until Mexican captain Rafael Marquez equalised, and the harsh reality is that there have not been many moments since then that have given the footballing public something to celebrate.
In exactly five years, South African football has gone from the highest of highs to the lowest of lows, with last month’s report from the US Justice Department putting the entire World Cup legacy in jeopardy after allegations emerged that bribery secured the country the right to host the spectacle in 2010.
There have been many other disappointments along the way, but none more serious than the most recent one.
Five years later, we take a look at how South African football has moved on since the “Feel it, it is here” days.