Bafana Bafana

Does Bafana coach Hugo Broos' policy on overseas-based players spell trouble for Percy Tau?

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Bafana Bafana head coach Hugo Broos. (Photo by Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images)
Bafana Bafana head coach Hugo Broos. (Photo by Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images)
  • Bafana Bafana coach Hugo Broos says overseas-based players need to be busy for their clubs in order to be considered for match-day duty.
  • Some of Bafana's best players who campaign in Europe are, at best, benchwarmers at their clubs.
  • Broos believes there's space for older players, but only if their quality contributes positively to the team.

Bafana Bafana coach Hugo Broos said overseas-based national team players will have to be turning out regularly for their clubs in order for them to be considered for match-time.

With the likes of Percy Tau, Bongani Zungu and Keagan Dolly struggling for game time at their respective clubs, it is going to interesting to see how the 69-year-old former Belgian international will navigate this tricky stretch.

Tau, who's been warming the bench at Brighton and Hove Albion after being recalled from his excellent loan spell at Anderlecht in Belgium, has been Bafana's best player.

He had a hand in all of Bafana's 2021 African Cup of Nations qualifying wins against Sudan and Sao Tome and Principe.

Broos, who unexpectedly but deservedly won the 2017 Afcon with an unheralded Cameroon side, did also say they'll have to be picked because of the experience they bring from their leagues.

"I have a list of overseas based players and we will analyse it. I've looked at some names and there are overseas-based players who don't play at their clubs," Broos said.

"Those aren't the players we are waiting for. Just because you're playing at a European club doesn't automatically qualify you to play for Bafana Bafana.

"The overseas based players have to be playing and they have to have the quality.

"There will be players from abroad because it won't be a good thing if we don't pick them, so I will do the relevant work."

Broos also moved to defend himself from his earlier statements of not wanting to pick older players, saying that the quality of the player has to be factored in.

Age is not something that some Bafana players have on their side. Four of Bafana's starting 11 from the failed Sudan game in March are 30-plus.

Luther Singh (23) was the only player who was under 25 while Tau and Lebohang Maboe were the only 26-year-olds in the match-day 11.

Broos said age needed to be directly proportional to a player's quality.

"The quality is important. You can have an old man of 23 and a young man who is 30," Broos said.

"It's not that you're 30 that you can't play for Bafana Bafana, I never said that. However, you have to look to the future.

"When you have a 31-year-old player, in two years, he'll be 33. Will he be able to play Afcon at 33? Some players are able to do so, but some can't, and you have to be prepared for that."

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