Bafana coach Broos back in SA this weekend to prepare for World Cup qualifiers
Bafana Bafana coach Hugo Broos is expected in the country on Saturday morning with his Macedonian assistant Čedomir Janevski to start preparations for the World Cup qualifiers.
The 69-year-old Belgian coach returned home for his second Covid-19 vaccination soon after his appointment in May and has not taken his place on the bench in the team’s recent matches.
Broos missed the friendly against Uganda at Orlando Stadium last month and also did not play a role in the team’s participation in the Cosafa Cup competition that the makeshift Bafana won in Gqeberha.
“The coach is back in the country on Saturday morning‚” confirmed SA Football Association (Safa) CEO Tebogo Motlanthe.
The start of the 2022 World Cup qualifiers was postponed to September due to contentious Covid-19 testing protocols and to also enable some African countries time to upgrade their facilities to meet Fifa standards.
Motlanthe said Broos and his assistants‚ Janevski and Helman Mkhalele‚ will start working on preparations for the forthcoming and tricky World Cup qualifiers against Zimbabwe away and Ghana at home in early September.
“I am having a meeting with them on Monday to discuss plans for the forthcoming World Cup qualifiers against Zimbabwe and Ghana. After those discussions‚ we will probably call a press conference to share the plans for the World Cup qualifiers‚” the Safa CEO said.
In the absence of Broos‚ a makeshift Bafana lifted the Cosafa Cup after beating Senegal in a penalty shootout in the final under caretaker-coach Morena Ramoreboli‚ who took over at the 11th hour after Mkhalele contracted Covid-19.
It remains to be seen what type of combination Broos will select for the all-important qualifiers as he has made it clear Bafana must rebuild from the team that failed to qualify for next year’s Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) in Cameroon.
Broos seems likely to pick some players from the team that failed to qualify for Afcon‚ some from the squad that won Cosafa and others from the Under-23 squad that lost all their three group matches at the Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Ethiopia are the fourth team in SA’s Qatar 2022 World Cup qualifying Group G.