Did Bafana Bafana players ignore Broos’ instructions in their dire draw with Liberia?

Hugo Broos, Bafana Bafana, March 2023Backpagepix
  • Broos revealed that he warned his players against Liberia
  • Bafana coach said he preached caution at halftime
  • South Africa let a two-goal lead slip to draw the match

WHAT HAPPENED? South Africa took a 2-0 lead inside 22 minutes but allowed Liberia a route back into the game in the second half as the Lone Stars secured a morale-boosting point in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier at the Orlando Stadium on Friday.

Broos has now revealed that he told his players to be wary of Liberia getting a goal that would boost their confidence during his halftime pep talk but it seems his players did not follow the instructions as his fears were confirmed when Tonia Tisdell started the comeback before Mohammed Sangare levelled.

It was a result that became too bitter to swallow for the Belgian tactician, who refused to take questions from the media after the game, before later apologising, having watched his side waste several chances after Lyle Foster’s brace had put them in a commanding position.

WHAT DID HE SAY? “I said it also to the players during half-time that they have to be very careful, if we are going like this that we maybe concede a goal and once that goal came, then it’s always when it’s 2-1 they will get motivation and the other team is starting doubting,” Broos told Safa media, as quoted by iDiski Times.

“That’s what happened with us. I said it in the half-time, please don’t let that happen. Then when you see that that happened and then the second goal comes, yes ok you’re full of emotions and you don’t want to see it anymore and you run away.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Broos’ charges have an opportunity to bring back the smile on their coach and their fans’ faces as they face Liberia in the return leg on Tuesday when a win will get their qualifying campaign back on track.

Having looked superior than their opponents, South Africa will have to polish their finishing and keep it tight at the back, to get the much-needed victory in Monrovia where their hosts will be buoyed by home support.

WHAT’S NEXT? Bafana Bafana cannot afford to lose in Monrovia on Tuesday as it will see them miss back-to-back Afcon tournaments.