Broos reveals what he told Morena & why Mofokeng had to make Bafana debut in win over Zimbabwe

Bafana Bafana gave an inspiring performance on Tuesday evening at the Free State Toyota Stadium in Bloemfontein to defeat Zimbabwe 3-1 in Group C's 2026 World Cup qualifier.

Iqraam Rayners strike and a brace by substitute Thapelo Morena gave South Africa just their second win in the group, with Tawanda Chirewa getting what turned out to be a mere consolation to the Warriors.

Despite their good display in the first half, the hosts were frustrated on several occasions by Zimbabwe goalkeeper Godfrey Chitsumba who pulled some good saves thanks to his agility.

Elias Mokwena, who struggled to make an impact in the first half, was subbed with the Mamelodi Sundowns attacker taking his place. It turned out to be what Bafana needed as the quick forward managed to score a double which guaranteed his team maximum points after a 1-1 draw with Nigeria last week on Friday in Uyo.

Thapelo Morena, South Africa

What did Broos tell Morena? The Belgian reveals message that changed the outcome

Overlooking experienced Percy Tau and introducing Morena was definitely a tough call for the 72-year-old coach. He has since shared his analysis after the first half of missed chances and what he told Morena before coming on.

“It was frustrating because we started very well, very soon in the first half 1-0 but it became 1-1,” the former Cameroon coach said in a post-match interview.

“We were shaken by the Zimbabwe goal and we went too much down, gave them space, and were dangerous a few times. So we corrected some things during half-time and you saw another South African team; good football, created chances and I think we deserved the victory.

“[Morena] did what I asked during halftime, to look for spaces behind the defense. You see, the space was there and we used it very well. Thapelo is very quick and he made a fantastic run.”

Relebohile Mofokeng, South Africa

Rele needed it! Broos justifies the introduction of the Orlando Pirates teenager & the limited subs made

Bafana made just two substitutions – Morena coming in for Mokwana and Relebohile Mofokeng who replaced the impressive Oswin Appollis.

Broos has explained why he did not give others a chance, before insisting it was vital for the 19-year-old Bucs' teenager to win his first cap.

“We were thinking if there was pressure from Zimbabwe for the last six minutes then we should bring more changes,” he continued.

“It finished 3-1 but I thought Relebohile Mofokeng deserved two, three minutes. He got his first cap and I think he is happy with it.”

The win puts Bafana on seven points after four games, the same as leaders Rwanda and third-placed Benin. The next game for South Africa is scheduled for March 17, 2025, at home against Lesotho.

Broos reveals what he told Morena & why Mofokeng had to make Bafana debut in win over Zimbabwe
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.