Ime Okon: SuperSport Coach Hunt Explains Decision to Captain Youngster in CAF Confederations Clash

Ime Okon: SuperSport Coach Hunt Explains Decision to Captain Youngster in CAF Confederations Clash

Robert Abong'o
updated at February 26, 2024 at 6:46 PM
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Ime Okon
  • 20-year-old Ime Okon captained SuperSport United in a Confederations Cup match
  • Head coach Gavin Hunt called upon the young defender due to his leadership qualities
  • Matsatsantsa were eliminated from the competition with a dead-rubber match to spare

SuperSport United head coach, Gavin Hunt, made headlines on Sunday, February 25, by selecting 20-year-old defender Ime Okon as captain for their clash against Future FC in the CAF Confederations Cup.

Despite the team's eventual 1-1 draw, Hunt's decision drew attention to his long-term vision for the club.

The match in Polokwane marked a somewhat dull moment for Matsatsantsa, as they were eliminated from the competition with a group-stage match remaining.

SuperSport United defender Ime Okon. Photo: SuperSport United FC.
SuperSport United's 20-year-old defender Ime Okon captained the team in the CAF Confederations Cup clash against Future FC. Photo: SuperSport United FC.
Source: Twitter

Currently at the bottom of Group A with four points from five matches, the team faces Algerian side USM Alger in Algeria in their final fixture, which holds little significance.

Hunt's choice to appoint Okon as captain was rooted in his commitment to building a team for the future.

Speaking on his decision, he stressed the young defender’s leadership potential, likening him to past young talents who have flourished under his guidance.

“I think he’s a future captain. I mean I’ve done it before with Bongani Khumalos when they were 20, 21,” Hunt said, as quoted by iDiski Times.

While acknowledging the importance of the CAF experience for his team, particularly the young players, the manager reiterated that the league remains their primary focus.

Hunt meets Hugo Broos

Beyond the pitch, Hunt disclosed details of his conversation with South Africa's national team coach, Hugo Broos, ahead of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON). Broos sought insights from local coaches regarding potential national team selections, indicating a proactive approach to engaging with the country's football community.

Reflecting on his interaction with Broos, he shared insights into their discussion about players, signalling a collaborative effort between club and national team management.

“We did meet before the Nations Cup(AFCON 2023). He asked me my opinion about players, and I gave him my opinion. We did have a long chat," Hunt disclosed, as quoted by Far Post.

Former SuperSport FC Stars Set to Join Billiat in Zimbabwe

Sports Brief reported that two former SuperSport FC stars were poised to follow Khama Billiat to Zimbabwe's Premier League.

Kudakwashe Mahachi, previously with Orlando Pirates and SuperSport United, is currently linked with a potential transfer to Dynamos FC or Yadah.

Former SuperSport forward, Evans Rusike, has also expressed interest in joining Billiat's newly chosen outfit.

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Robert Abong'o
Editor - Africa Team
South Africa