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Reaching the World Cup qualifying round would be a big win for Hugo Broos’ youthful Bafana Bafana

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South Africa may not participate in the 2022 World Cup, but if they get through the group stages to the last playoff round, a youthful squad with soaring confidence regardless of who they face.

But there’s still a long way to go, and for now, Bafana Bafana and coach Hugo Broos, who is quickly gaining the hearts of South African fans, will concentrate on beating Zimbabwe at FNB Stadium on Thursday night.

It would be a fantastic accomplishment if SA could preserve their current Group G lead in their final two games against Zimbabwe and second-placed Ghana in Cape Coast on Sunday.

Following an opening draw against Zimbabwe in Harare, the team has gone unbeaten, winning at home against Ghana and again against Ethiopia.

“You know you can say what you want as a coach but if the players don’t take it it’s no use,” Broos said, asked about the apparent rapid understanding established with his young players having only taken charge of Bafana matches in September.

“From the beginning I had the feeling that the players wanted to go with me in the direction that I selected. The first match against Zimbabwe was very hesitant, because nobody knew — I didn’t know either before the game — what to expect.

“But after that game we talked and then you saw the game against Ghana, and that gave us a boost of confidence. And now when I see those players coming together, even when they are new players, it’s really a team.

“The way they treat each other and go on with each other, and the atmosphere in the team is very positive. And I know that they believe now really that we can be in the next round.

“So the confidence is there, and that is very important, even when we have difficult games. And as a coach when you see that then you feel that it can happen.

“But again, it’s a football game, and anything can happen. But I’m confident that we can reach the next round. And I said it already three months ago that we will do everything to qualify, but if it doesn’t happen we have to be disappointed, but it’s not a disaster.

“Because this team has only existed for three months. So we did a very good job until now, and I really hope that we have the compensation for that good work and we will be in the next round.” he ended.

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