SOUTH AFRICA V ZIMBABWE | TUESDAY 10 JUNE | Free State Stadium | 18:00

South Africa will look to go top of Group C when they lock horns with Zimbabwe later this evening. On the back of a highly successful Africa Cup of Nations campaign, Hugo Broos’ chargers have more than raised an eyebrow in recent years …

To win (90 min)
South Africa 4/10 
Draw 28/10
Zimbabwe 13/2


Bafana Bafana’s 2026 World Cup qualifying campaign took a step in the right direction after they secured a crucial point away to Nigeria in Uyo. With a game in hand over Benin, South Africa has the chance to claim pole position in the group in front of their home faithful.

Since taking charge of the national team in 2021, Hugo Broos has overseen a period of change that has paid dividends. His side recently broke into the top 10 CAF-ranked nations in the latest FIFA rankings, largely thanks to his predominately Sundowns selection. 

The Belgian tactician has retained almost the same defensive unit that shone in Côte d’Ivoire earlier this year which supports (arguably) the most cohesive frontline in the Group, which contains African heavyweights Nigeria. Indeed, it was against the Super Eagles that the evergreen Themba Zwane demonstrated once again why his experience in the national setup is invaluable and I suspect there could be more ‘Mshishi’ magic in this one.


Group C is beginning to take shape, with five points separating the current unexpected leaders Benin from bottom-placed Zimbabwe. The 122nd-ranked team, according to the latest FIFA rankings, will have their work cut out for them, as they look to bounce back from their 2 nil ‘home’ loss to Lesotho in Johannesburg on Friday.

Interim coach Jairos Tapera, who was a surprise replacement for yet another caretaker coach Norman Mapeza, admitted that the Warriors need to improve defensively. That defeat to Lesotho marked the third straight appearance wherein the Warriors conceded 2+ goals.

To add insult to injury, his side suffered a major blow just ahead of this round of World Cup qualifiers as Plymouth Argyle defender Brendan Galloway sustained an injury that ruled him out of this round of fixtures. Even with Galloway present, it was always going to be a long day at the office for the minnows …

PREDICTION: South Africa  

Despite Zimbabwe often raising their game when they come up against their South African counterparts, the host’s pursuit for another home win in the CAF World Cup Qualifiers should see them claim maximum points here. Frankly put, I can’t see anything other than a win for Hugo Broos & Co.

Written by Desh Parthab