Thursday, January 17, 2019
The 2019 under-12 Danone Nations Cup soccer season promises to be a spectacular one. It is the biggest tournament of its kind in the world, touching the lives of over 2 million people globally and the call is out for primary schools around South Africa to register and enter their teams.
This year marks two major milestones in the history sponsors’ Group Danone, namely the company turns 100 and it is 20th edition of the tournament. To mark this special year, it has been decided that the 2018 and 2019 editions of the tournament will be held simultaneously.
“It’s a privilege for Danone to be involved in this prestigious tournament,” said Chantel Ehlers, Internal Communications Manager, Danone Southern Africa. “Over the past 20 years the tournament has inspired millions of youngsters around the world to believe in their dreams and develop healthy eating habits that will benefit them throughout their lives. As 2019 coincides with our centenary year, we have decided to host a spectacular double final in the place where it all began – Barcelona. We are using this milestone and the power of football to make a strong connection to our ‘One Planet. One Health’ brand platform.”
Nomlinganiselo Primary School from the Western Cape won the 2018 South African Danone Nations Cup and will compete against 18 other nations for the 2018 World Title. The process to find the 2019 champions has begun and registrations are now open.
South Africa has much to celebrate with the country being only one of two to have won the tournament three times (2003, 2007 and 2009); in 2006 the country was named the best attacking team and produced the top goal scorer. In 2008 South Africa won the Team Spirit award and in 2013 and 2016 the teams were recognised by the Department of Sports and Recreation as the best development team in the country.
“It’s our time to highlight all that Danone has achieved from both a brand and tournament perspective and we are continuing to inspire those who represent the world’s future. The young dreamers that will attend the world finals will have a unique experience. South African teams have always made a lasting impression at the world finals with their colourful singing and dancing as well as their keen drive to embrace the new experience and make as many friends as possible and we expect the 2018 and 2019 teams to continue this trend,” said Ehlers.
The tournament is run under the auspices of the South African Schools Football Association (SASFA) who collate registration forms, finalise dates and fixtures and manage the games at cluster, regional, provincial and national level.
Games will kick-off at cluster level in March culminating in the national final to be held, at a venue to be decided, in June or July. The World Finals are expected to take place in early October (dates to be confirmed).
“Health and nutrition are at the heart of Danone and we have made it our mission to bring health through food to as many people as possible. To positively impact on the health of our people, we acknowledge that exercise is as important as eating well and so we have invested in soccer, the biggest sport in the country, to assist us in achieving our goals,” concluded Ehlers.
Schools can register for the competition by contacting the national coordinator at the SA Schools Football Association (SASFA), Themba Tshabalala, or on 011 403 2844, 084 290 0602 or 072 588 4957. Alternatively, they can visit the Danone Nations Cup South Africa Facebook page or go to to download the necessary documents. (Documents are always on Danone.co.za also)
The 2018 countries have been cut down to 19: