Foster situation doesn't sit well with Broos

Foster situation doesn't sit well with Broos
Burnley's Lyle Foster arrives for the Premier League match at Turf Moor, Burnley. Picture date: Saturday February 3, 2024.

by Thando Mpembe

Tuesday Feb 13, 2024. 13:31

South Africa head coach Hugo Broos has expressed his frustration at Lyle Foster’s decision to play for Burnley during the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations.

The 23-year-old striker had asked Broos not to include him in the Bafana Bafana squad for the tournament in Ivory Coast as he was dealing with mental health issues at the time.

Foster was given time off by the Clarets and missed seven games towards the end of 2023 before returning to action in the 2-0 defeat to Everton on December 16.

The Orlando Pirates youth product then went on to feature for Vincent Kompany’s side on another six occasions in the Premier League, leaving Broos unhappy with the situation.

The Belgian tactician is convinced that Foster would have made a difference at the continental showpiece, where Bafana reached the semi-finals and eventually finished third.

“Honestly, I am not happy. I knew from the beginning what the problems were. I knew and I was understanding [of the situation] because I spoke a few times with Burnley coach Vincent Kompany,” Broos said.

“Our doctor spoke to his counterpart at Burnley. We put everything together and decided it was not a good thing to call Foster for AFCON. Lyle Foster himself wrote a letter to say, ‘Please don’t call me because I am not ready to play AFCON’.

“But then he starts playing for his club and he plays every game for 90 minutes. I am asking myself why it wasn’t possible for him to come with us to Ivory Coast.

“This is my frustration, but I will not blame anyone. I am frustrated when I see him play because we could have used him at AFCON. He is a good striker and he scores. If we had Lyle we were going to be much stronger.”

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