‘Bafana want just one thing!’ – Broos sounds Zimbabwe warning & challenges Caf to introduce VAR

Bafana Bafana had themselves to blame on Friday night after missing clear chances during their Group C's 2026 Fifa World Cup qualifier against Nigeria that ended 1-1.

The 34-year-old ever-green Mamelodi Sundowns attacker Themba Zwane scored his 12th in the national team colours, before Fisayo Dele-Bashiru struck 35 seconds after the break to ensure the home team got their share of spoils.

However, the result does not paint a real picture of what happened in Uyo where the visitors dominated the proceedings despite the quality possessed by the Super Eagles. 

The Bafana Bafana display left their fans wondering what could have happened had the team not experienced logistics hiccups, spending more than 18 hours to reach the venue which gave the players little time to rest and prepare for the crucial game.

Broos is happy with the display by his players, before stating that the main objective is to defy the odds and be part of the teams that will play the World Cup. It is a warning to Zimbabwe that they should not expect anything on Tuesday.

5 things we learned from Nigeria vs South Africa World Cup qualifier
Photo by Icon Sport

It was difficult… but all players want only one thing – Broos & his team dream big

“The result is correct as we had our chances and Nigeria had theirs too, but I have to congratulate my players,” the Africa Cup of Nations-winning coach said in a presser.

“We had a terrible journey to Nigeria, but I can only be proud of the mentality [of the players]. It was a tough game against a good team, but in the first half, I think we played fantastic football. It was a little bit unlucky from our side that after two minutes in the second half, we conceded a goal. Then you know it will be difficult, but again we fought for it.

“All the players want only one thing, and it's going to the World Cup. You see it in their mentality.”

Benin vs Nigeria lineups
Jordan Adeoti of Benin challenged by Maduka Okoye and William Troost-Ekong of Nigeria during the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations Qualifier between Benin and Nigeria at Stade Charles de Gaulle,Porto-Novo,Benin,on 27 March 2021 ©Sports Inc Photo by Icon Sport – Photo by Icon Sport

Caf challenged to introduce VAR – ‘Little countries have progressed making it even tougher'

When the draw and pairing was done, South Africa and Nigeria were seen as the main candidates to advance from Group C. However, this has not been the case; the Super Eagles are chasing their first win having registered identical 1-1 results against Lesotho, Zimbabwe, and South Africa respectively.

After their 2-1 win over Benin in matchday 1, Bafana Bafana suffered a shocking 2-1 loss against Rwanda before their recent draw with the Super Eagles.

Lesotho now lead the pool with five points, with Benin, Rwanda, and South Africa following with four points each. Nigeria have three, one more than Zimbabwe who are at the bottom.

“The little countries progressed a lot, and you also saw the results in Afcon, with teams who were in the second and third round, which we normally don't expect,” Broos shared his analysis.

“Every team can win against any other team, every team can take points from any other team, so it will be tough until the last game.”

To avoid controversy, the experienced tactician now believes the VAR should be introduced in these matches.

“Sometimes for these kinds of games, I think we need VAR. It's very important, and we saw it at Afcon. It was a good thing. We are playing the World Cup qualifiers, and I think in such competitions and for such important games, we need VAR. It's important.

“You see, Lesotho is first in the group. But imagine three or four years ago, if you said a team like Lesotho would be first and Nigeria would be fourth, everybody would laugh.”

As Bafana prepare to tackle Zimbabwe, the Super Eagles will play Benin away on Monday.

‘Bafana want just one thing!’ – Broos sounds Zimbabwe warning & challenges Caf to introduce VAR
Willis Sob

Willis Sob is an experienced journalist who has been in the game since 2009, covering major assignments around the continent.
His hunger for African football is unmatched, always getting the best angles and facts to feed the fans and quench their thirst.