Bafana’s chronic goal-scoring problem in spotlight again

ADRIAN da Costa of Andorra, right, challenges Mlondi Mbanjwa of South Africa during the Fifa Series Algeria Edition 2024. | BackpagePix

ADRIAN da Costa of Andorra, right, challenges Mlondi Mbanjwa of South Africa during the Fifa Series Algeria Edition 2024. | BackpagePix

Published Mar 23, 2024


BAFANA Bafana’s chronic goal-scoring problem has again come under the spotlight after lowly Andorra held the South Africans to a one-all draw in the Fifa Series in Algeria on Thursday night.

It was a game that Bafana, with a 79% possession advantage, should have won 6-0. However, they could only manage one goal, even though their dominance produced 16 shots at goal.

Since the departures of Benni McCarthy and Shaun Bartlett, Bafana has suffered from a shortage of quality options in the striker’s position. Six years ago, former Bafana coach Stuart Baxter, spoke at length about the problem, but nothing was done.

Locally, Orlando Pirates addressed the issue for a short while by hiring a coach to work extensively with strikers.

After Thursday’s match, Bafana coach Hugo Broos said South African football’s dismal failure in front of the opposition’s goal was highlighted again.

“I think we (South Africa) showed again, shall I say the problem of South African football, we don’t have that scorer – the guy who gets one chance and scores a goal,” said Broos.

“If you see the six or seven chances we’ve had today and then we only scored once. In this game (against lowly opponents) you always must win if you have more quality in front of the goal.

“You would have seen the chances we had today – six or seven, and even with that little present we gave Andora today, we could have won the game. We lost (wasted) many chances.

“This is the only thing I’m not satisfied with (lack of scoring).”

Broos fielded a starting XI that included four new caps in an untried combination, who managed to impose themselves on the match but failed to capitalise on numerous scoring chances. Debuts were given to Elias Mokwana (the eventual scorer), Thapelo Xoki, Mlondi Mbanjwa and Patrick Maswanganyi.

“I’m very satisfied with the players. They played very well today. There were a few guys who satisfied me a lot,” Broos told Safa media.

“I’m satisfied, but not with the result. I tried to win today, but I’m satisfied with the performance of this team. It is a new team,” said Broos.

“They’ve given me much satisfaction. I think they are guys on which we can count on in the next games, in June and by the end of the year.”

“It was also the goal for us to give players that chance to have experience internationally.

“We saw today what I said before the game. This is a team that is very defensive and physical. They always look for the duels and play the man first, that is their style.

“It is very difficult to play a team like Andorra. They lose nearly every game but always only by one goal. That could have happened today, we gave it (a goal) away easily, but after that, we had six or seven good chances to score.”

“I am satisfied, not with the result, though. We tried to win, but I am satisfied with the performance.

“I think these are players we can count on for the games in June and at the end of the year.”

Bafana will now play Algeria on Tuesday. Broos is expected to return to his strongest line-up against the North African powerhouse.