JOHANNESBURG - Hugo Broos, the new Bafana Bafana coach, says he wants his team to win matches, while at the same time being pleasing on the eye.
It's been more than two decades since Bafana won the Africa Cup of Nations. Their form has declined since then as the closest they came to winning the title was in the last edition after reaching the quarter-finals in Egypt under coach Stuart Baxter.
They've failed to qualify for the 2022 showpiece – thanks to a defeat by Sudan in the last qualifier in Group C. That failure cost coach Molefi Ntseki his job as he was sacked at the end of March. Enter Broos. The 69-year-old was not the primary candidate for the hot seat as Safa wanted either Carlos Queiroz or Pitso Mosimane back in the hotseat, they both declined.
Nonetheless, Broos has a lofty billing on the continent, especially after winning the Afcon title with Cameroon – the Indomitable Lions – four years ago. He knows that his work is cut out for him.
“I like fancy football, that's my philosophy,” Broos told the national broadcaster yesterday morning after his arrival in the country on Monday night. “We'll not be playing in front of 60 000 spectators and just waiting for the ball. That's not my style.”
“We won't rely on counter-attacks, although sometimes you have to use it. But that won't be the tactic. What's important for me is the team, not a couple of individuals. I achieved that with Cameroon. We didn't have the best team but we won the Afcon.”
Broos is under no pressure to hit the ground running after the Confederation of African Football (CAF) decided to postpone the June World Cup qualifiers until September. Bafana are in Group G alongside Zimbabwe, Ethiopia and Ghana.
Ghana and Bafana have met recently in the Afcon qualifiers where the latter took four points from the South Africans after a win and a draw. Broos, though, remains confident that they'll have a plan for the Black Stars when they host them in September.
Broos says he's expecting his soonto-be announced South African assistant to give him intel about the local players. Ntseki was reported to be the frontrunner for the position but that won't materialised after he officially left Safa last week.
“The plan is to have players for the next games in June. But for that to happen I'll need my South African assistant because he knows the players better than I do. Then we'll take some decisions from that because that's important,” said the Belgian-born mentor.