Zakhele Lepasa with Hugo Broos

Bafana coach Broos denies fallout with Lepasa  

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Bafana Bafana head coach Hugo Broos has strongly denied rumours of a fallout with striker Zakhele Lepasa following the player’s withdrawal from the national team.

Lepasa was forced to withdraw from Bafana due to an injury after the disappointing goalless draw against Eswatini in an international friendly last Friday at FNB Stadium.

The Orlando Pirates hitman featured in the second half of the Eswatini game before reports emerged that he will not be part of the team to play Ivory Coast.

However, some reports suggested that Lepasa had left the Bafana camp due to a fallout with the coach prior to the team travelling to Ivory Coast. Broos has now moved to quash these rumours, insisting that there is no rift between himself and Lepasa. 

Zakhele Lepasa with Bafana Bafana coach Hugo Broos at a conference


 “I was surprised and a little bit angry when I heard in the media there was a clash between me and Lepasa,” said Hugo Broos as Bafana are scheduled to take on the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations hosts Ivory Coast this evening (21:00).

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“This is a very, very, big lie. There has never been a clash. The only thing is that Lepasa suffered from a knee [injury] on Friday, and it became worse during the night. So we decided together with the doctor that it was better not to go to Côte d’Ivoire.

“He wouldn’t play the game. He wouldn’t be ready, so therefore he went to his (Pirates) club. I can show an MRI; the proof is there. “But in South Africa, they always try to look for something negative. So let’s repeat again: there has been no clash between me and Lepasa.”

Zakhele Lepasa will hope to recover in time for the AFCON tournament in Ivory Coast set to start in January 2024 with Bafana in group E alongside Mali, Tunisia, and Namibia.

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