Zimbabwe’s Stadium Crisis: Bafana Bafana Coach Hugo Broos Calls for CAF Ban


JOHANNESBURG – In an impassioned plea to the Confederation of African Football (CAF), Bafana Bafana coach Hugo Broos has demanded a ban on countries like Zimbabwe, whose inability to provide suitable football venues has resulted in a stadium crisis during the 2026 World Cup Qualifiers.

Hugo Broos says CAF should ban Zimbabwe over stadium crisis
Image: SowetanLive

Among the seventeen teams affected by this predicament, the Warriors were forced to relinquish their home advantage and seek refuge in the Huye Stadium in Butare, Rwanda—where they faced off against Nigeria in a crucial Group C clash on Sunday, hoping to secure their path to football glory.

Not far behind, Lesotho’s national team found themselves in a similar situation, as they prepare to battle against Benin at the Moses Mabhida Stadium, a neutral ground for their upcoming home encounter on Tuesday.

Expressing his frustrations, coach Hugo Broos shed light on the gravity of the matter with poignant words. 

“This one thing I don't understand in African football is that home games are not home games,” he lamented, as reported by IDiski Times.

Broos continued to emphasize his concerns, particularly citing Zimbabwe's situation. 

“I think Zimbabwe will play their home games in South Africa, so we have a little advantage for that game,” he stated, highlighting the unfairness of the current circumstances.

Drawing attention to past instances, Broos pointed out the case of Liberia, whose home game was played in Morocco. He argued that such practices undermine the integrity of the competition, calling for CAF to take decisive action.

Acknowledging the challenges faced by countries in building suitable stadiums due to financial constraints, Broos proposed a solution. 

“You can easily say, ‘in five years, if you don't have a stadium, then you don't play CAF games anymore, you don't play AFCON qualifiers and that of the World Cup’,” he suggested, urging CAF to set a clear deadline.

Broos concluded by emphasizing the importance of maintaining a fair and credible tournament. 

“If you say nothing and those things happen, then the competition is not 100% correct anymore,” he argued. 

He expressed his hope that the decision-makers at CAF would address the issue definitively, stating, “I hope one day they will decide by putting a period to say, ‘Okay, if you have not decided on the stadium that you need to have, I'm very sorry, you had those three or four or five years, finished, no qualifiers anymore – no for World Cup or AFCON’. Maybe then, they will do something.”

The passionate plea from Coach Hugo Broos sheds light on a crisis that threatens the integrity of African football. 

With teams like Zimbabwe forced to seek refuge in foreign lands, the urgency for CAF to address the stadium predicament has never been more apparent—as much as it is also the responsibility of the respective football associations and governments to speedily address the pressing issue.

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