From 34 to 23, Hugo Broos reduced his squad that is due to take on Liberia in the upcoming AFCON qualifiers.
The 2023 tournament will be played in Ivory Coast in January/February time-frame of 2024 and Bafana are looking to qualify for the first time after since 2019 when they were eliminated by Nigeria in the quarter finals.
The Belgian opted for experience and added on-form Sundowns’ danger man, Cassius Mailula in his final squad. Broos believes this time is a crucial time for Bafana and needs to secure qualification more than handing out debuts.
Kobamelo Kodisang who is on song in Portuguese second division was a notable absentee in the team. Kodisang has netted 10 goals in 17 starts but Broos felt he is not playing in a good league. Other players snubbed by Broos are Neo Maema and right back Khuliso Mudau, both from Sundowns.
Maema has been instrumental in the Sundowns midfield, and Mudau, with his dangerous runs has made his name as the most dangerous right back in the league. Broos felt he needed to pick only one player between teammates Thapelo Morena and Khuliso Mudau, and felt Morena offered more defensively than Mudau.
Broos opted for Sekhukhune United man, Nyiko Mobbie, whom he feels “has never let him down” in all the opportunities he has given him. Bafana need all the points to secure qualification in a group that has only 3 teams in it, with top two warning their ticket to Ivory Coast.
The eleven players that were dropped were: Khuliso Mudau, Khanyisa Mayo, Brenden Petersen, Miguel Timm, Siphelele Mkhulise (injured), Siyanda Msani, Tarriq Fielies, Pule Mmodi, Grant Maggerman, Fargie Lakay, and Kobamelo Kodisang.
Broos, today, announced Miguel Timm will replace USA-based Njabulo Blom, who according to reports from his club is sick.
.@BafanaBafana squad to face Liberia🇱🇷 in their back-to-back @CAF_Online AFCON qualifiers— Bafana Bafana (@BafanaBafana) March 16, 2023
🇿🇦 will play against Liberia 🇱🇷 on 24 March 2023 at Orlando Stadium at 6pm and again on 28 March 2023 in Liberia @SABC_Sport @LeCoqSportif_SA pic.twitter.com/sCmzwdVf2q