Bafana Bafana head coach Hugo Broos has clarified his decision to call up Mduduzi Mdantsane as the replacement for Percy Tau.
Tau, 29, has pulled out of the upcoming friendlies against eSwatini and Ivory Coast citing personal reasons after netting four goals in two games for Al Ahly in the Egyptian Premier League.
Mdantsane, who was culled from the preliminary squad for the final 23-man squad now receives the call, which has been met with a mixed reception from supporters.
The 28-year-old playmaker has yet to find the net for Kaizer Chiefs in 11 games this season, five of which he started.
“I think last time I said when we talked about the replacement of Themba Zwane (who was left blooded in the face in the last camp and pulled out), we knew that Themba is at a certain age, we have to look for the future,” Broos said at the HPC today.
“But we have someone behind him, certainly also for the AFCON. At his age I don’t think every game every three days he can play for the hundred percent of Themba.
“So you need someone there (to take the load too), you need solutions. (Mdu) was on our list, so now because Percy Tau (is out), we had two choices – to take another winger or we took the opportunity to have someone maybe in the future who can be a replacement for Themba.
“And that is why he (Mdu) is there. Okay I said what I said (about Themba in the past overlooking him), but stop now with that.
“I just choose players not because they are at Sundowns, not because they are at Chiefs or Orlando Pirates, I don’t choose them because they are in those teams – I just choose because I need them and they are the best at that moment in that position, that’s all.”
The former Cape Town City star has featured only two minutes for the national team under Broos in a 1-0 win over Zimbabwe in the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.
South Africa host eSwatini on Friday at FNB Stadium before their away trip against the AFCON hosts on Tuesday.