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Broos – Selecting Him Could Be Like Playing With 10 Men

Bafana Bafana head coach Hugo Broos has come clean why he overlooked Golden Boot winner Khanyisa Mayo for the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations squad.

Mayo, 25, scooped the Golden Boot alongside Peter Shalulile last season with 12 goals in 27 games and this season he remains the leading South African scorer with nine goals in 18 games.

Along with Iqraam Rayners, their omissions brought about some questions as Broos opted for Zakhele Lepasa and Evidence Makgopa to replace the unavailable first-choice duo of Lebo Mothiba and Lyle Foster

“You know why Mayo was not at AFCON? Mayo is good months ago but he’s not progressed, he needs to take that step more to be a real Bafana Bafana player, but he didn’t, so, therefore, he was not with us at AFCON,” Broos said.

“Okay now with all the injuries, I give him another chance, so it’s up to him to show he can reach that level of Bafana – if he can, we have a good striker, more especially a younger one, so that means for the future we have less problems.”

When pressed to elaborate on what exactly Mayo is lacking, Broos stated he’s unable to affect games, which speaks to the role he seeks with a long striker, where they can hold up play, play in the channels and drop deep to receive possession with link-up play.

“I find that Mayo is sometimes really out of the game, you look at him and you don’t see him, he’s there but no action, nothing, you can’t be like that as a striker, certainly not at the level we play,” he said, insinuating Mayo is playing primary as a poacher at present.

“I think it’s a mental problem maybe, to have that mentality to say I want to show it, he’s a nice guy, I liked him, that’s why he was with us before, there’s potential but he needs to make that step and if he doesn’t he’ll always be someone who scores goals but will never reach the international level we want.

“It’s not enough, you can wait and wait and wait and then he scores, oh okay, but I think it’s not what we want, you can do it with Messi but not with Mayo, I’m very sorry, he has to prove more, show more and be in the game.

‘This is sometimes not the case with Mayo, if he does that at international level, he won’t touch the ball and then you play with 10 [players].”

Mayo will be aiming to net his first goal for Bafana Bafana when they take on Algeria and Andorra in the North African state this month.

Lorenz Kohler
Lorenz Kohler
Lorenz Köhler is an award-winning South African football journalist. Having cut his teeth in the industry working at Kick-Off Magazine, he is now iDiski Times' senior digital content writer. He specialises in breaking top African football stories and transfers with a major focus on the 'big-three' Mamelodi Sundowns, Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates and CAF inter-club and international competitions. In 2021 he was listed amongst the top-five journalists under 30 in Print Media for the AIPS Awards.