By Sports Reporter
SOUTH AFRICA’s Bafana Bafana coach Hugo Broos says he is confident that his charges will be able to beat the Warriors home and away in the upcoming 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.
The Southern African neighbours were drawn together in Group K of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations alongside Morocco and Liberia.
The qualifiers roar to life on 30 May, with the top two group stage finishers making it to the 24-team tournament.
Reacting to the draw, Broos dismissed the threat posed by the Warriors, whose participation in the qualifiers hanging in the balance due to a Fifa ban, and singled out Morocco as the team to beat in the group.
Broos said Bafana Bafana would be aiming to collect all six points in their two matches against the Warriors, after managing four points in the two World Cup qualifying matches between the two teams recently.
“We played Zimbabwe for the World Cup qualifiers; we know them very well, and we played them twice. It’s a tough team. If we can beat them twice, it will be good for us,” Broos said.
The Belgian coach said the Atlas Lions, who went as far as the quarterfinals in the 2021 edition held in Cameroon, were the biggest threat in the group.
“It’s clear that Morocco is the best team in our group, they were in Afcon in January and were eliminated by Egypt, and it’s a very good team. Maybe Morocco is the best in our group,” said Broos. “They have some players who are playing in Belgium, like [Selim] Amallah, like [Samy] Mmaee, so I know this team very well. I think if we want to be first in the group, we have to beat Morocco.,” he added.
While he believes Liberia are the weakest team in the group, he warned that underestimating them could be detrimental. He said they would look at Liberia’s previous games and study them before the qualifiers kick-off.
After missing out on the final stage of the 2022 Qatar Fifa World Cup qualifiers following a defeat against Ghana, Broos will be hoping to qualify for the next edition of the Afcon. The 2023 Afcon tournament will take place in May and June next year.