Bafana Bafana coach, Hugo Broos, says he’s happy with the serious fightback that his players staged in the international friendly against Mozambique at the Mbombela Stadium on Thursday night.
South Africa came from a goal down to beat the stubborn Mambas in front of a decent crowd.
Bafana Bafana have now won three matches in a row, having scored seven goals in the process. Their next game is another international friendly against Angola at the same venue on Sunday.
After winning their last two friendlies against Sierra Leone and Botswana late in September, the Bafana Bafana coach was keen to have more matches for his team.
His wish was granted when FIFA agreed to have an extra international window this week for teams who are mainly preparing for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. Bafana Bafana are on a mission to prepare for next year’s back-to-back Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers against Liberia in March, and used this opportunity to arrange two more friendlies.
Mozambique on the other hand, is preparing for the CHAN tournament to be held in Algeria in January.
The COSAFA neighbours were no pushovers as they gave Bafana Bafana a good run for their money. Broos says he’s proud of his team’s performance.
“I have to say that I’m very satisfied and very proud of my team. We had I think 10 chances, and we played good football. The opponents had one chance and we gave the other one. So, in the beginning, two mistakes from our side but the way they took the game in their hands and they dominated today the opponent I am very pleased.”
It was a game of two halves, with Bafana Bafana trailing by a solitary goal at the break. But the home side then staged a strong comeback in the second half, with US-based striker Bongokuhle Hlongwane scoring a brace within a space of two minutes.
Broos says he told his boys to do the basics right in the second half.
“I just told the boys to go on we did not play badly certainly not. But we played against an opponent who was very close to the goal and then they waited with very quick counters they tried to be dangerous. But we controlled it, we controlled it very good so I said to them just go and play, let the ball go don’t run too much with the ball and you can will that game and we won it.”
The 22-year-old Hlongwane who missed several matches due to an injury, added a lot of fire power to the Bafana Bafana attack, along with Zakhele Lepasa and Themba Zwane.
The coach says he was also happy with two debutants, Monnapule Saleng and midfielder Miguel Timm.
“I know Hlongwane from the previous game he was always dangerous who has quality, he is quick so in this game we needed someone like that and we also knew he couldn’t play ninety minutes. I think I can be happy with the performance certainly for Miguel, Miguel had a very good game, he was in the midfield good passes, recuperation very happy with him.”
The coach is expected to make several changes to the team that will face Angola at the same venue on Sunday.
“We have to look at tomorrow and the day after tomorrow like Hlongwane is it good that he played then another game maybe other players will have a rest. Because last Saturday with the Carling Cup there are some players who played two games that day, today again. So maybe it’s a little bit too much and there will be changes that’s for sure but who I will see tomorrow and after tomorrow.”
Bafana Bafana cannot underestimate Angola after they beat a second-string South African side in the CHAN qualifiers.
South Africa was denied a chance to qualify for the CHAN tournament after they were thrashed 4-1 at home by Angola in September.
Angola registered a 6-1 aggregate victory, after a 2-nil win in the first leg in Luanda.