Bafana Bafana coach Hugo Broos says his side have to believe they can go all the way at the Africa Cup of Nations after a stout defensive performance against fancied Tunisia earned them a last-16 coach against Morocco on Tuesday.
South Africa comfortably held their North African opponents at bay and go into a knockout clash with top-ranked Morocco having beaten their rivals as recently as last June.
Broos believes there is momentum building in his team and he says if they keep the same work-ethic and belief, anything is possible in the Ivory Coast.
“There is a very happy coach sitting behind this microphone, not only because we qualified for the next round, but also because of the performance,” Broos said. “A coach can be satisfied when he sees his boys working and fighting on the pitch and doing what we ask.
And a coach is very happy when he sees the guys on the bench making big efforts to support their teammates. I saw this today, a family, a team that wanted just one thing.”
Broos came into the tournament believing Bafana can go all the way and nothing has changed his mind.
“I think that the objective should be the highest objective,” he said. “Everything is possible, when you see the results of other teams it is incredible.”
Morocco midfielder Sofyan Amrabat, who was Man of the Match in his side’s 1-0 win over Zambia that sealed top spot in their pool, says they were desperate to finish first in the group.
“We wanted this first place. We are proud to have done it,” he said. “It was a difficult match but we did the essentials. There is always room to improve before our next match.
“We want to go as far as possible in this tournament and we will do our best to succeed.”
Morocco were without coach Walid Regragui, who is appealing an effective two-match ban from CAF for an incident following the pool stage game against DR Congo.
“We heard the news today. It was surprising,” Amrabat said. “We missed him but we made do with the situation. We hope to have him for the next match.”