Stuart Baxter: Youthful Bafana Bafana cannot afford to underestimate struggling Seychelles

Bafana are the favourites against the Pirates, who last won a match in March 2016 when they defeated Lesotho in a 2017 Afcon qualifier

South Africa head coach Stuart Baxter has stressed the importance of having youngsters in the Bafana Bafana camp.

The British tactician included several players who are under the age of 25 in his latest Bafana squad to face Seychelles in 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers (Group E).

Bafana will welcome the Pirates of Seychelles at the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg on Saturday and the return leg is scheduled to be played at the Stade Linite in Victoria next week Tuesday. 

Baxter is pleased to see youngsters in the squad as they look to collect six points from the encounters against the islanders.  

“If you manage those things well, then you will be able to get the kind of performance you are looking for in game situations. You have got to keep on working on it though,” Baxter told the media. 

 “We are now pushing for more younger and exciting players as compared to the more established ones,” he revealed. 

Baxter, who was in charge of the England under-19 national team between 2002 and 2004, insisted that his side will not underestimate Seychelles with the Pirates having failed to win any of their last 17 matches in all competitions. 

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“We are not going to underestimate our opponents because we have done it many times before in the past. We want to approach the matches in a professional manner and make sure that we do well," he concluded.

Lebogang Phiri, Lebo Mothiba, Thabo Nodada, Percy Tau and Aubrey Modiba are only but some of the players who are under the age of 25 in the current Bafana squad.

Belgium-based forward Tau, who has established himself as one of Bafana's key players, is expected to start against the Pirates this weekend.