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Wikipedia

This article is about the men's team. For the women's team, see South Africa women's national football team.

The South Africa national football team represents South Africa in men's international soccer and it is run by the South African Football Association, the governing body for Soccer in South Africa. The team's nickname is Bafana Bafana, and South Africa's home ground is FNB Stadium, which is located in Johannesburg. The team's greatest result was winning the Africa Cup of Nations at home in 1996. The team is a member of both FIFA and Confederation of African Football (CAF).

South Africa
Nickname(s)Bafana Bafana
AssociationSouth African Football Association
ConfederationCAF (Africa)
Sub-confederationCOSAFA (Southern Africa)
Head coachHugo Broos
CaptainRonwen Williams
Most capsAaron Mokoena (107)
Top scorerBenni McCarthy (31)
Home stadiumFNB Stadium
FIFA codeRSA
First colours
Second colours
Third colours
FIFA ranking
Current 68 (23 December 2021)
Highest16 (August 1996)
Lowest124 (December 1992)
First international
Argentina 0–1 South Africa
(Buenos Aires, Argentina; 9 July 1906)
Biggest win
Australia 0–8 South Africa
(Adelaide, Australia; 17 September 1955)
Biggest defeat
Unofficial
South Africa 1–9 Great Britain
(Cape Town, South Africa; 17 July 1920)
Official
South Africa 0–5 Brazil
(Johannesburg, South Africa; 5 March 2014)
World Cup
Appearances3 (first in 1998)
Best resultGroup stage (1998, 2002, 2010)
Africa Cup of Nations
Appearances10 (first in 1996)
Best resultChampions (1996)
CONCACAF Gold Cup
Appearances1 (first in 2005)
Best resultQuarter-finals (2005)
African Nations Championship
Appearances2 (first in 2011)
Best resultQuarter-finals (2011)
COSAFA Cup
Appearances18 (first in 1998)
Best resultChampions (2002, 2007, 2008, 2016, 2021)

Having played their first match in 1906, they returned to the world stage in 1992, after 16 years of being banned from FIFA, and 40 years of effective suspension due to the apartheid system. South Africa became the first African nation to host the FIFA World Cup when it was granted host status for the 2010 edition. The team's Siphiwe Tshabalala was also the first player to score in this World Cup during the opening game against Mexico, which was followed by an iconic Macarena-style goal celebration from five South African players. Despite defeating France 2–1 in their final game of the Group Stage, they failed to progress from the first round of the tournament, becoming the first host nation in the history of the FIFA World Cup to exit in the group stage. Despite this, the team ranked 20th out of 32 sides, ranking higher than 12 teams who qualified.

Contents

Pre-1992

Soccer first arrived in South Africa through colonialism in the late nineteenth century, as the game was popular among British soldiers. From the earliest days of the sport in South Africa until the end of apartheid, organised soccer was affected by the country's system of racial segregation. The all-white Football Association of South Africa (FASA) was formed in 1892, while the South African Indian Football Association (SAIFA), the South African Bantu Football Association (SABFA) and the South African Coloured Football Association (SACFA) were founded in 1903, 1933 and 1936 respectively.

The South African team that toured South America in 1906. They played 12 matches with only one defeat.

In 1903 the SAFA re-affiliated with the English Football Association after the Second Boer War between the British Empire and the Boer state. There was a plan to play a tournament held in Argentina, with South Africa and Fulham as guest teams, but it was not carried out. Nevertheless, South Africa traveled to South America in 1906 to play a series of friendly matches there.

South Africa played a total of 12 matches in South America, winning 11 with 60 goals scored and only 7 conceded. Some of the rivals were Belgrano A.C., Argentina national team, a Liga Rosarina combined, Estudiantes (BA) and Quilmes. The only team that could beat South Africa was the Argentine Alumni by 1–0 at Sociedad Sportiva stadium of Buenos Aires, on June 24, although the South Africans would take revenge on July 22, defeating the Alumni by 2–0.

The players were exclusively white, civil servants, government employees, bankers and civil engineers. Seven of the 15 players were born in South Africa and 8 originated from England and Scotland.

South Africa was one of four African nations to attend FIFA's 1953 congress, at which the four demanded, and won, representation on the FIFA executive committee. Thus the four nations (South Africa, Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan) founded the Confederation of African Football in 1956, and the South African representative, Fred Fell, sat at the first meeting as a founding member. It soon became clear however that South Africa's constitution prohibited racially mixed teams from competitive sport, and so they could only send either an all-black side or an all-white side to the planned 1957 African Cup of Nations. This was unacceptable to the other members of the Confederation, and South Africa were disqualified from the competition, however some sources say that they withdrew voluntarily.

At the second CAF conference in 1958 South Africa were formally expelled from CAF. The all-white FASA were admitted to FIFA in the same year, but in August 1960 it was given an ultimatum of one year to fall in line with the non-discriminatory regulations of FIFA. On 26 September 1961 at the annual FIFA conference, the South African association was formally suspended from FIFA. Sir Stanley Rous, president of The Football Association of England and a champion of South Africa's FIFA membership, was elected FIFA President a few days later. Rous was adamant that sport, and FIFA in particular, should not embroil itself in political matters and against fierce opposition he continued to resist attempts to expel South Africa from FIFA. The suspension was lifted in January 1963 after a visit to South Africa by Rous in order to investigate the state of soccer in the country.

Rous declared that if the suspension were not lifted, soccer there would be discontinued, possibly to the point of no recovery. The next annual conference of FIFA in October 1964 took place in Tokyo and was attended by a larger contingent of representatives from African and Asian associations and here the suspension of South Africa's membership was re-imposed. In 1976, after the Soweto uprising, they were formally expelled from FIFA.

In 1991, when the apartheid system was beginning to be demolished, a new multi-racial South African Football Association was formed, and admitted to FIFA – and thus finally allowing South Africa to enter the qualifying stages for subsequent World Cups.

1992–1994: Readmission

After spending nearly two decades in international isolation, the South African national team played its first game on 7 July 1992, beating Cameroon 1–0 at Kings Park in Durban.

The team entered the 1994 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers and was placed in Group 5, along with Mauritius, Zambia and Zimbabwe. They won one game, away to Mauritius, and drew with Mauritius and Zimbabwe at home. The team finished third in the group and failed to qualify.

For the 1994 FIFA World Cup qualifiers South Africa was placed in Group D, along with Congo, Libya and Nigeria. Libya withdrew from the qualifiers. South Africa beat Congo home and away. They drew with Nigeria at home and lost away. South Africa finished second in the group, and failed to qualify for the next stage of the qualifiers.

1996–1998: Rise

In 1996, a mere 5 years after readmission, South Africa achieved their finest moment when they hosted (and won) the 1996 Africa Cup of Nations, in the process reaching the lofty heights of 16th in the FIFA rankings. The shock firing of Cup of Nations winning coach Clive Barker did little to slow momentum as they followed their 1996 success with a second-placed finish at the 1998 Africa Cup of Nations after Egypt under Jomo Sono. The team had earned their first appearance at the FIFA World Cup, qualifying for France '98. Under head coach Philippe Troussier, South Africa suffered a heavy 3–0 defeat to hosts France in their World Cup debut, but played credibly against other group opponents Denmark and Asian juggernauts Saudi Arabia, earning 1–1 and 2–2 draws respectively on their way to an early exit.

2000–2002: Peak and coaching instability

Following their successful 1996 and 1998 Africa Cup of Nations' campaigns and their World Cup debut in 1998, South Africa were seen as a growing power on the continent. Under the coaching of the newly hired Trott Moloto they would start the decade off strongly, finishing third in the 2000 edition of the Africa Cup of Nations, but as was increasingly symptomatic of soccer in South Africa at the national level, yet another coaching change was made. Portuguese Carlos Queiroz was hired as the man to take South Africa to the 2002 FIFA World Cup. South Africa qualified for the 2002 Africa Cup of Nations and were eliminated in the quarter-finals against hosts Mali. In the run-up to the 2002 FIFA World Cup, for which South Africa had easily qualified for as winners of Group E, Queiroz left his post as head coach amid increasing behind-the-scenes political wrangling.

Former legend Jomo Sono was brought back in a caretaker capacity to lead South Africa in Korea/Japan. Placed in Group B along with Spain, Paraguay and debutants Slovenia at the 2002 FIFA World Cup, South Africa had high hopes of progressing to the knockout phase of the tournament. After earning a 2–2 draw against Paraguay in their opening game with a last-gasp penalty from Quinton Fortune and following it up with their first ever victory at the finals with a 1–0 win over Slovenia, South Africa headed into their final game against Spain second in the group and 3 points clear of Paraguay and Slovenia. In arguably the game of the group, in which 5 goals were scored inside the hour, South Africa twice came from a goal down in an agonising 3–2 defeat to the Spanish. In the other game, which kicked off at the same time as the South Africa-Spain game, Paraguay found themselves beating Slovenia 2–1, but the result was not enough for Paraguay to surpass South Africa in the standings as South Africa's goal difference of zero was superior to Paraguay's minus one. But South African hearts would be broken. With 84 minutes gone in the Slovenia-Paraguay game Nelson Cuevas bagged a vital third goal for Paraguay, giving Paraguay a 3–1 victory over Slovenia. The win left both Paraguay and South Africa level on 4 points with the late Cuevas strike against Slovenia lifting Paraguay's goal difference to zero, level with South Africa's. The deciding factor moved onto a third tiebreaker; goals scored, and as Paraguay had scored six goals to South Africa's five, they progressed to the Round of 16 at the expense of South Africa. What made the early exit all the more heartbreaking was that South Africa was the only team in the group that managed to hold its own against runaway group winners Spain, as both Slovenia and Paraguay were comfortably cast aside 3–1 by the Spanish.

This era (1996–2002) of rising soccer prowess saw South Africa blessed with fine footballers such as record-setting goalscorers Benni McCarthy & Shaun Bartlett, defensive hardmen and inspirational captains Lucas Radebe & Neil Tovey, creative maestros John Moshoeu & Doctor Khumalo and defensive stalwart Mark Fish.

2002–2006: Decline and coaching roundabout

In the period following the 2002 World Cup and leading up to the 2006 FIFA World Cup, South Africa would go through 4 head coaches; Ephraim Mashaba (2002–2004), April Phumo (2004), Stuart Baxter (2004–2005), Ted Dumitru (2005–2006) and caretaker Pitso Mosimane (2006). Neither coach was able to match the successes seen in the period 1996–2002 as South Africa failed to progress beyond the group stages in either the 2004 Africa Cup of Nations or 2006 Africa Cup of Nations, failing to register a single goal in the latter. Above all though, South Africa failed to qualify for the 2006 FIFA World Cup. After being placed in Group 2 for qualifying, South Africa were beaten to Germany by Ghana. Following poor performances in both the 2004 and 2006 Africa Cup of Nations, rumours circulated that SAFA had been attempting to attract a high-profile international manager to coach Bafana Bafana and that former England boss Sven-Göran Eriksson had been targeted. This rumour however has been denied.

2007–2010: Hosting the World Cup

South Africa vs Uruguay at the 2010 FIFA World Cup

By failing to register a single goal at the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations and by missing out on Germany 2006, local supporters had become increasingly unhappy with the decline in performance of the national team. In light of these poor performances it was decided that the hiring of a more experienced manager was essential. Former World Cup-winner and Brazilian national team coach Carlos Alberto Parreira was approached for the job and he accepted. He signed a R100 million contract covering four years. His term as manager started 1 January 2007 targeting the 2010 FIFA World Cup, which South Africa had been awarded the right to host, becoming the first African nation to ever host association football's global showpiece.

Under Parreira, with his rich history of success at the international level, South Africa was expected to improve, but early signs were not good as they would exit the 2008 Africa Cup of Nations at the first hurdle once again. To make matters worse, Parreira stood down as coach in April 2008 due to family reasons. Joel Santana was hand-picked by Parreira to succeed him and he was signed to coach the team until 2010. Under Santana South Africa would slide into its darkest period in international soccer since readmission. Failing to even qualify for the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations with soccer characterised by a complete lack of creativity and little goal-scoring threat, South Africa tumbled down the FIFA rankings and was at one point not even ranked among Africa's top-10 nations. Santana was fired in 2009 and Parreira would return in time for the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup – also hosted by South Africa – and South Africa would see an improvement in performance, holding its own against eventual world champions Spain and perennial powerhouse Brazil, the latter requiring an 88th-minute goal to overcome South Africa in the semi-finals. South Africa would ultimately finish 4th, following a thrilling 3–2 loss to the Spanish in the 3rd/4th Place Playoff.

A string of victories, albeit against marginal opposition, in the run up to the 2010 FIFA World Cup seemed to instill a sense of confidence in the team as well as the nation. For the 2010 World Cup, the first in Africa, South Africa was placed in Group A, along with Mexico, surprise package and eventual semi-finalists Uruguay and former world champions France. South Africa played the first game, which opened the World Cup 2010 tournament with a 1–1 draw against Mexico after taking the lead through a wonderful long-range Siphiwe Tshabalala strike. Katlego Mphela would hit the post late into the game as South Africa, buoyed by a frenzied home crowd, so very nearly opened the tournament with a win. A heavy 3–0 defeat in the second group game against Uruguay and a Mexican win over France left South Africa with a mountain to climb in order to progress beyond the group stage. For the deciding match against France, Parreira would discard his previous tactics of a defensive-minded five-man midfield and a lone forward in favour of a more attacking formation utilising two forwards, as up until the France game South Africa had focused more on not losing than they did on trying to win, but the heavy defeat against Uruguay coupled with Mexico's victory over France had now left them with a goal difference of negative three that needed to be overcome in order for them to progress. South Africa would also require a favour from Uruguay, needing the Uruguayans to inflict a sizeable defeat on Mexico to aid their chances of progress. The change in tactics worked as South Africa gained the upper hand over the French, attacking at will. At the half South Africa had a 2–0 lead thanks to goals from Bongani Khumalo & Katlego Mphela while Uruguay were beating Mexico 1–0 in the other group game. As it stood, South Africa needed at least one more goal against France while Uruguay needed to double their lead against Mexico. Sadly, it was not to be as while South Africa did secure an historic victory over France, they failed to score again and conceded a late goal for a 2–1 victory while the Uruguayans had failed to add to their lead, as they ran out 1–0 victors over Mexico. For the second World Cup in a row South Africa finished level on points with second place but were eliminated, this time on goal difference while it had been on goals scored in 2002. Elimination in the group stage made South Africa the first hosts to fail to progress beyond the first round of a World Cup.

South Africa-France starting lineups 2010-06-22
Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification
1 Uruguay 3 2 1 0 4 0 +4 7 Advance to knockout stage
2 Mexico 3 1 1 1 3 2 +1 4
3 South Africa(H) 3 1 1 1 3 5 −2 4
4 France 3 0 1 2 1 4 −3 1
Source: FIFA
Rules for classification: Tie-breaking criteria
(H) Host

Following the conclusion of the World Cup and the expiration of his contract, Carlos Alberto Parreira announced his retirement from coaching. As part of his contract, Parreira had also drawn up a plan of recommendations extending as far as soccer development at grass-roots level that SAFA was encouraged to review in the hopes of reviving the fortunes of the national soccer team. Pitso Mosimane, who had been Parreira's assistant, was selected as the new head coach with Parreira's blessings.

2012–2014: Continued struggles

South Africa failed to qualify for the Africa Cup of Nations finals after the rules were misread. They ultimately played for and achieved a draw at home in Nelspruit against Sierra Leone in a game they needed to win, when news about Niger trailing in Egypt was received, leading to the qualification of Niger at their expense, and also at Sierra Leone's. They then celebrated at the end as if they had qualified, making it the second time they would be so embarrassed in 4 years after qualifying as a lucky 3rd and last best runners-up for the 2008 edition, with Zambia catapulting over South Africa as Group winners after a 3–1 win in Cape Town – and thereby gaining an automatic qualifying ticket on head to head record with the South Africans erroneously thinking goal difference would be the primary tie-breaker.

The SABC also announced that the team had qualified and the SAFA president Kirsten Nematandani then congratulated the team on TV before realisation dawned. SAFA said they would appeal to CAF but the appeal was later withdrawn.

South Africa continued to disappoint into 2012, opening the year with a lacklustre 0–0 draw away to 2012 Africa Cup of Nations co-hosts Equatorial Guinea. This would be the start of a run that would see Bafana Bafana rack up 6 successive draws to start the year. The run of draws included 1–1, 0–0 and 1–1 draws at home to African champions Zambia, Ghana and Senegal respectively in International Friendlies. Following a 1–1 draw at home to Ethiopia in a 2014 World Cup qualifier, head coach Pitso Mosimane was fired. The draw increased South Africa's streak to 7 games without a win. Mosimane was replaced as head coach by Steve Komphela on an interim basis while SAFA interviewed potential candidates to fill the post on a permanent basis.

In his first game in-charge as interim head coach, Komphela oversaw yet another uninspired performance in South Africa's second World Cup qualifier against Botswana as they drew yet again, extending their winless run to 8 games. Bafana Bafana finally tasted victory when they defeated Gabon 3–0 at home in a friendly, ending their winless streak.

Komphela, along with Gordon Igesund, Gavin Hunt, Neil Tovey and Ephraim Shakes Mashaba had been shortlisted as one of the candidates to be the next head coach of South Africa, with Komphela and Igesund emerging as the front-runners. On 30 June 2012, Gordon Igesund was appointed as the new head coach.

Following the crisis in Libya throughout 2011, CAF made the decision to move the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations from Libya – who were the original hosts – to South Africa on the grounds of safety and security. Libya was then given the right to host the 2017 edition of the tournament, which was originally awarded to South Africa. As hosts of the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations, South Africa would automatically qualify for the competition.

South Africa, as hosts, were seeded and drawn in Group A along with Angola, Morocco and tournament debutants Cape Verde.

South Africa kicked the tournament off on 19 January against debutants Cape Verde at a wet National Stadium. South Africa made use of a defensive formation as coach Gordon Igesund deployed two deep midfielders in Kagisho Dikgacoi and Reneilwe Letsholonyane and along with the poor weather conditions delivered an uninspired performance resulting in a 0–0 draw. In the hosts' second group game against Angola, coach Igesund dropped his midfield pairing of Dikgacoi and Letsholonyane and opted for a new midfield pairing of the defensive minded Dean Furman and the more attacking May Mahlangu. The result was a far more confident display as Dean Furman took control of the midfield – something that was lacking in the first game – and delivered a man of the match performance. South Africa ran out winners with goals from Siyabonga Sangweni and Lehlohonolo Majoro setting up a 2–0 victory. Heading into the final group game against Morocco South Africa only had to avoid defeat in order to progress to the knockout stages while Morocco needed a win to progress. South Africa put in a woeful first half performance that saw them 1–0 down at half time and struggling with the Moroccans' direct approach. It was only thanks to the heroics of goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune, who pulled off a string of stunning saves, that South Africa were not further behind. An improved second half saw South Africa fight back with an equaliser from May Mahlangu, but South Africa continued to look vulnerable against Morocco's direct approach and subsequently fell behind again in the 81st minute. But typical of their improved tenacity in the second half South Africa swiftly responded through a Siyabonga Sangweni equaliser in the 86th minute. South Africa hung on to the draw, with the result enough to see them win group A and progress to the quarterfinals. Sangweni's late equaliser would prove vital as an injury time winner by Cape Verde in their final game against Angola would have seen Morocco and Cape Verde progress at the expense of South Africa, but as it was South Africa went through along with Cape Verde, who enjoyed a stunning debut in Africa's showpiece tournament.

South Africa were drawn against Group B runners-up Mali in the quarterfinals. South Africa delivered a stunning first half performance, playing at a high tempo to negate the Malians' superior physical presence. Unable to keep up with the pace of the game, Mali were overwhelmed as South Africa carved out chance after chance, finally making the breakthrough in the 31st minute as Thuso Phala drove into the box and fired a low cross across the goalmouth which an open Tokelo Rantie pounced on. South Africa headed into the break 1–0 up. However, in the second half, led by veteran midfielder and captain Seydou Keita, the Malians began to impose themselves and equalised in the 58th minute amid a momentary defensive collapse as the South African defense allowed captain Keita to head home an unchallenged cross. From that point on it was Mali that controlled the game. Neither side was able to secure a winner and the game headed into extra time. After another goalless 30 minutes the game moved to penalties. Siphiwe Tshabalala took the first penalty and gave South Africa the lead with a stunningly placed shot into the top left corner. Cheick Diabaté would swiftly respond. Then South Africa's tournament proceeded to unravel. Dean Furman was next up for South Africa but he saw his weak shot easily saved by goalkeeper Soumbeïla Diakité. Adama Tamboura would score Mali's second penalty handing them the advantage. In an almost carbon copy of Furman's penalty May Mahlangu's penalty was also easily saved low to the left by goalkeeper Diakité. Mahamane Traoré confidently dispatched Mali's third penalty, handing them a comfortable 3–1 cushion. Lehlohonolo Majoro was next up for South Africa but the pressure was too much as he fired a wild shot high and to the right of the goal. With the miss South Africa were eliminated from the tournament 3–1 on penalties.

After a poor 2012 in which South Africa had performed poorly and had steadily slid down FIFA's rankings, their performance in the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations was a marked improvement. Although coach Gordon Igesund had been handed the almost impossible task of a semifinal berth as a target in his contract, SAFA came out and said the signs of improvement were sufficient enough for Igesund's job to remain safe.

South Africa received a First Round bye when the qualifying process for the 2014 FIFA World Cup got underway on 30 July 2011. For the Second Round of the qualifying process, South Africa was placed in Pot 1 as a top-seeded nation for the draw from where they were drawn into Group A, along with neighbours Botswana, the Central African Republic and Ethiopia. South Africa opened their qualifying campaign with a dismal performance, struggling to overcome a one-goal deficit in a 1–1 home draw with Ethiopia, a nation ranked nearly 70 places below them. This result, coupled with the less than inspiring string of results that had seen South Africa winless in the past 6 outings that preceded it, resulted in the sacking of head coach Pitso Mosimane. Under interim head coach Steve Khompela, South Africa played out to yet another uninspiring 1–1 draw, this time away to Botswana.

Following on from a positive display in the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations, Gordon Igesund guided South Africa to their first victory in the 2014 World Cup qualifiers as they beat the Central African Republic 2–0 in Cape Town. South Africa continued their push for a place at the World Cup with a 3–0 win over the Central African Republic on 8 June. South Africa endured a difficult build-up to the game as they were only able to practice once before the game due to a delayed connecting flight, but they performed admirably against their physical opponents on a bumpy pitch. The win was South Africa's first away win in a World Cup qualifier since 2005. Ethiopia also won their match away to Botswana on the same day, maintaining their 2-point lead over South Africa.

South Africa and Ethiopia met in a potential group decider in Addis Ababa on 16 June, with the Ethiopians going undefeated at home in 12 games. South Africa were under pressure from the kick-off and as early as the 3rd-minute goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune was forced into a stunning save. South Africa would recover to take a 1–0 lead through a stunning left-footed half volley from Bernard Parker in the 33rd minute. The lead was short-lived as Ethiopia equalised in the 44th minute following a defensive lapse by South Africa when they failed to deal with a loose ball on the edge of the box. Ethiopia would secure the win thanks to a stunning own goal by Bernard Parker in the 70th minute as he headed the ball into his own net from a free kick. The 2–1 defeat ended South Africa's qualification hopes and assured Ethiopia passage to the third and final round of qualifying. However, following the match it emerged that Ethiopia were under investigation for fielding an ineligible player during their 2–1 win over Botswana and that they could face losing the 3 points and have the result reversed to a 3–0 defeat, as in line with FIFA sanctions. This would give South Africa an outside chance of qualifying for Brazil. Ethiopia later admitted to the error. On Tuesday, 19 June, it was reported in the South African press that Ethiopia had again fielded the same player against South Africa with the player still to serve his one-match ban and it might be possible that Ethiopia could face losing another 3 points to South Africa. Should this happen, South Africa would then qualify for the next round at the expense of Ethiopia.

South Africa failed to qualify. These were the final standings:

Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
Ethiopia 6 4 1 1 8 6 +2 13 2–1 1–0 2–0
South Africa 6 3 2 1 12 5 +7 11 1–1 4–1 2–0
Botswana 6 2 1 3 8 10 −2 7 3–0 1–1 3–2
Central African Republic 6 1 0 5 5 12 −7 3 1–2 0–3 2–0
Source:[citation needed]
Notes:
  1. Awarded

2014–2016

South Africa's first match under new coach, Ephraim Mashaba was a Group A qualifying match for AFCON 2015, played at Al-Merrikh Stadium against Sudan on 5 September 2014. South Africa won the match 3–0 with two goals from Sibusiso Vilakazi in the 55th and 61st minutes and a goal from Bongani Ndulula in the 78th minute. South Africa's second match in the AFCON qualifiers was a home match at Cape Town Stadium against Nigeria on 10 September. South Africa held off the defending AFCON champions for a 0–0 draw. Following these two matches, Bafana Bafana moved up two places to 67th in the FIFA world ranking.

South Africa then took on Congo at the Stade Municipal de Pointe-Noire on 11 October. The game was won 2–0 with goals from Bongani Ndulula and Tokelo Rantie in the second half. This victory brought South Africa to the top of Group A. Next was the return match in Polokwane's Peter Mokaba Stadium. The game ended in a 0–0 stalemate which kept South Africa at the top of the group. Following these two matches, South Africa climbed ten places in the FIFA rankings to no. 57.

Next up was the second match against Sudan on 15 November which was won 2–1, with goals from Thulani Serero in the 37th minute, and Tokelo Rantie in the 54th minute. The game was originally scheduled to be played at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit, but it was moved to the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban in honour of captain and goalkeeper, Senzo Meyiwa who was shot and killed two weeks prior to the game. Coach Ephraim Mashaba said the win was for the fallen hero, who had not conceded a goal in the four qualifiers he had played. The result sealed qualification for South Africa, with an away game versus Nigeria to spare. It was the first time since 2008 that Bafana managed to qualify for the tournament (in 2013 they qualified as hosts after Libya exchanged their rights for security reasons).

The last game of the qualifiers was on 19 November at the Akwa Ibom Stadium in Uyo, Nigeria. It ended 2–2, therefore eliminating Nigeria and denying them the chance to defend their crown at 2015 AFCON. The coach Ephraim Mashaba had earlier said that South Africa would not do Nigeria any favours. It showed in the way that the South Africans approached the match. Tokelo Rantie missed a sitter in the fourth minute when he fluffed his chance over the bar, but he made amends when he opened the scoring in the 42nd minute after a neat pass from Dean Furman. It looked as if South Africa would get their first competitive win over Nigeria when Rantie doubled his and his country's tally in the 48th minute. But it wasn't to be, as they failed to hold on for a historic win. Nigeria came back to draw 2–2 but it wasn't enough to secure Nigeria's qualification as Congo beat Sudan 1–0 to book their place at the tournament.

Under Mashaba, South Africa failed to qualify for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations. This, in addition to the various controversies, disparaging remarks that Mashaba allegedly made about SAFA top officials, his supposedly arrogant nature and his ill treatment of overseas based stars, led to his suspension after leading South Africa to a 2−1 victory over Senegal in a 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier.

2017–present: promising generation

After being unable to reach the 2018 FIFA World Cup, South Africa had undergone a systematic reformation and transformation to regain its status as an African soccer power. The reformation of South African soccer was aided by the successful rise of its under-age soccer, including the U-17, U-20 and U-23 teams that all achieved some African successes and participated in World tournaments at their levels.

South Africa qualified for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations finishing second and undefeated, with a shock 2–0 away win over Nigeria. South Africa participated in the tournament grouped with Morocco, Ivory Coast and Namibia, and narrowly qualified to the knockout stage with only a single 1–0 win over Namibia and had to face host Egypt (which had Mohamed Salah), winners of AFCON seven times and had just qualified for Russia 2018 World Cup. The South Africans then pulled out the biggest upset in the tournament, knocking Egypt out in the round of 16 stage with a 1–0 win in Cairo. Then, South Africa once again faced Nigeria in the quarter-finals, but there was no further upset as Nigeria prevailed 2–1, but it was regarded as South Africa's best performance in the 2010s.

Under Molefi Ntseki, South Africa failed to qualify for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations. Molefi Ntseki was promptly sacked and the Hugo Broos was announced as his replacement.

Broos immediately set out to restructure the national team and the veteran players (Including captain Thulani Hlatshwayo) of the team were replaced with an exciting and young crop of players. Goalkeeper Ronwen Williams was named as the captain with Percy Tau being named as the vice-captain.

Nickname

"Bafana Bafana" is a nickname given to the national side by its fans. It is Zulu and translates literally as "the boys, the boys". Its actual meaning in Zulu is, "Go boys! Go boys!", though others take the double use of "Bafana" to mean "all of the boys"---the team and management, as well as the spectators; togetherness, as in the African concept of ubuntu.

In July 1992, at Kings Park stadium in Durban, fans shouted "Bafana bafana" [GO BOYS GO BOYS] when South Africa was on the verge of beating Cameroon and after the game. A group of three journalists, from South Africa newspaper The Sowetan, then began to use the name in print when referring to the team. The name was initially used only informally, as SAFA felt that it was not commercially viable, and that it was degrading to refer to a team of men as boys.

Standton Woodrush Ltd applied to trademark the name in 1993. The trademark was granted, but was for clothing only. In 1994, the team's technical sponsor at the time, Kappa, applied for the trademarks "Bafana" and "Bafana Bafana" in class 25. These were granted, and subsequently passed on to SAFA. In 1997, SAFA filed for the trademark "Bafana Bafana" for all goods and services, in all classes.

SAFA then applied to have Standton Woodrush Ltd removed from the trade marks register, on the grounds that SAFA was the rightful owner of the name. The case was dismissed on the ground that SAFA was not an interested person within the meaning of this term as used in the Trade Marks Act No. 94 of 1993, which provides that only an interested party has legal standing to seek relief.

SAFA made another application to gain ownership of the trade mark, with the second application going to the Appeal Court. The court again found that SAFA did not have the necessary grounds for ownership of the name in all classes. The court held that an intention to use a mark does not create a preference to registration, and that the proprietor of a trade mark need not be its originator.

In 2011 SAFA paid R5 million to Standton Woodrush Ltd for rights to the name "Bafana Bafana", in class 25 and all other classes.

Home stadium

First game of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, South Africa vs Mexico at Soccer City

The South Africa national soccer team does not use a single stadium as its home stadium for matches. Instead, they use a variety of stadiums throughout South Africa to host matches at.

The largest venue used is the 94,700-seater Soccer City in Soweto, outside Johannesburg. Other often used venues include the Atteridgeville Super Stadium, outside Pretoria, the Royal Bafokeng Stadium, outside Rustenburg, the Free State Stadium in Bloemfontein and Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban.

Matches have also been hosted at Ellis Park and Johannesburg Stadium in Johannesburg, Kings Park in Durban, Olympia Park in Rustenburg, Cape Town Stadium and Newlands Stadium in Cape Town, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium and the EPRU Stadium in Port Elizabeth, Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria, Orlando Stadium in Soweto, Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit, Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane, Griqua Park in Kimberley, Jan Smuts Stadium and Buffalo City Stadium in East London, Odi Stadium in Mabopane, Mmabatho Stadium in Mafikeng, Atlantic Stadium in Witbank and Olen Park in Potchefstroom.

The team has also hosted matches outside of South Africa. In preparation for the 1998 FIFA World Cup, the team hosted a friendly in Baiersbronn, Germany. As a warm-up for the 2002 FIFA World Cup, the team hosted a friendly at Mong Kok Stadium in Hong Kong. In 2006 the team hosted a Nelson Mandela Challenge match at Griffin Park, in London, England. During their preparations for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, the team hosted two matches in Germany. The matches were played at the BRITA-Arena in Wiesbaden and the Stadion am Bieberer Berg in Offenbach am Main.

Media coverage

The South African Football Association owns the rights to national team matches played in South Africa. SAFA currently have a contract with the South African Broadcasting Corporation, to broadcast these matches. It is up to the SABC to procure the rights to matches played outside of the country.

The SABC usually shows most national team games, though they have often had problems with broadcasting weekday matches. They have previously used delayed live footage, and sometimes not shown matches.

Most large tournaments in which the team play, such as the FIFA World Cup and Africa Cup of Nations, have separate broadcast rights. SuperSport purchase the pay TV rights to these tournaments, thus during these tournaments, they also show South African matches. The SABC usually holds the free to air rights to these tournaments, with the notable exception being the 2002 FIFA World Cup. Those matches were shown by e.tv.

Sponsors

When the team returned to international soccer in 1992, their kit was supplied by Italian clothing company, Kappa. The team wore Kappa kits up to and during the 1998 FIFA World Cup.

Following the 1998 World Cup, the kits for all South African national soccer teams were supplied by German sports apparel company Adidas. The sponsorship deal is believed to be worth R14 million per year. Their contract with the South African Football Association ran until the end of 2010.

On 7 June 2011, SAFA announced Puma as its new technical sponsor and unveiled Bafana Bafana's new kit.

In October 2013, ABSA announced its resignation as a sponsor of SAFA and the South African national team as of the end of their contract in December 2013. This was followed a week later by the announcement from Puma, that they too would step down as technical sponsors of Bafana Bafana.

From March 2014 until June 2020, the official kit provider was American sporting apparel company Nike from the international friendly match against Brazil.

Since June 2020, the official kit provider has been French sporting apparel company Le Coq Sportif.

The team now has one main sponsor, Castle Lager, a brand owned by South African Breweries. Smaller sponsors and suppliers include Energade and Tsogo Sun Hotels.

Kit provider Period
Kappa 1992–1998
Adidas 1998–2010
Puma 2011–2013
Nike 2014–2020
Le Coq Sportif 2020–present

The following matches were played in the last 12 months or are scheduled to be played.

2021

South Africa vUganda
10 June Friendly South Africa 3–2Uganda Johannesburg, South Africa
18:00 UTC+2
Report
Stadium:Orlando Stadium
Referee: Audrick Nkole (Zambia)
South Africa vEswatini
8 July 2021 COSAFA Cup Group A South Africa 1–0Eswatini Port Elizabeth, South Africa
15:00 UTC+2 Report
Stadium:Wolfson Stadium
Referee: Wilson Julio Muianga (Mozambique)
South Africa vZambia
14 July 2021 COSAFA Cup Group D South Africa 0–0Zambia Port Elizabeth, South Africa
15:00 UTC+2
Report
Stadium:Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Referee: Brighton Chimene (Zimbabwe)
South Africa vGhana
6 September 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Group G South Africa 1–0Ghana Johannesburg, South Africa
18:00 UTC+2 Hlongwane 83' Report Stadium:FNB Stadium
Referee: Derrick Kasokota Kafuli (Zambia)
Ethiopia vSouth Africa
9 October 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Group G Ethiopia 1–3South Africa Bahir Dar, Ethiopia
16:00 UTC+3
Report
Stadium:Bahir Dar Stadium
Referee: Shuhoub Abdulbasit (Libya)
South Africa vEthiopia
12 October 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Group G South Africa 1–0Ethiopia Johannesburg, South Africa
18:00 UTC+2
Report Stadium:FNB Stadium
Referee: Georges Gatogato (Burundi)
Position Staff
Technical Director Fran Mogashoa
Team Manager Levy Ramajoe
Head Coach Hugo Broos
Assistant Coach Helman Mkhalele
Cedomir Janevski
Technical Adviser Trott Moloto
Goalkeeper Coach Andre Arendse
Video Analyst Mark Davy
Team Doctor Thulani Ngwenya
Massage Therapist Renadani Manuku
Physiotherapist Nhlanhla Maphanga

Source:[citation needed]

Coaching history

Caretaker managers are listed in italics.

Current squad

No. Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club
1GK Ronwen Williams (1992-01-21)21 January 1992 (age 29) 24 0 SuperSport United
1GK Veli Mothwa (1991-02-12)12 February 1991 (age 30) 5 0 AmaZulu F.C.
1GK Bruce Bvuma (1995-05-15)15 May 1995 (age 26) 3 0 Kaizer Chiefs

2DF Sifiso Hlanti (1990-05-01)1 May 1990 (age 31) 23 0 Kaizer Chiefs
2DF Siyanda Xulu (1991-12-30)30 December 1991 (age 30) 12 1 Hapoel Tel Aviv F.C.
2DF Rushine De Reuck (1996-02-09)9 February 1996 (age 25) 11 0 Mamelodi Sundowns
2DF Nyiko Mobbie (1994-09-11)11 September 1994 (age 27) 10 0 Sekhukhune United F.C.
2DF Mosa Lebusa (1992-10-10)10 October 1992 (age 29) 6 0 Mamelodi Sundowns
2DF Terrence Mashego (1998-06-28)28 June 1998 (age 23) 4 0 Cape Town City F.C.
2DF Njabulo Ngcobo (1994-05-27)27 May 1994 (age 27) 3 0 Kaizer Chiefs
2DF Thibang Phete (1994-04-04)4 April 1994 (age 27) 3 0 Belenenses

3MF Percy Tau (1994-05-13)13 May 1994 (age 27) 34 13 Al Ahly
3MF Keagan Dolly (1993-01-22)22 January 1993 (age 28) 21 3 Kaizer Chiefs
3MF Teboho Mokoena (1997-01-24)24 January 1997 (age 24) 14 3 SuperSport United
3MF Mothobi Mvala (1994-06-14)14 June 1994 (age 27) 9 1 Mamelodi Sundowns
3MF Ethan Brooks (2001-11-22)22 November 2001 (age 20) 8 0 TS Galaxy F.C.
3MF Yusuf Maart (1995-07-17)17 July 1995 (age 26) 6 1 Sekhukhune United F.C.
4FW Evidence Makgopa (2000-06-05)5 June 2000 (age 21) 5 3 Baroka
3MF Thabani Zuke (1998-09-11)11 September 1998 (age 23) 2 0 Golden Arrows
3MF Mduduzi Mdantsane (1994-12-13)13 December 1994 (age 27) 1 0 Cape Town City F.C.
3MF Njabulo Blom (1999-12-11)11 December 1999 (age 22) 1 0 Kaizer Chiefs
3MF Goodman Mosele (1999-11-19)19 November 1999 (age 22) 0 0 Orlando Pirates

4FW Victor Letsoalo (1993-04-01)1 April 1993 (age 28) 7 4 Royal AM F.C.
4FW Bongokuhle Hlongwane (2000-06-20)20 June 2000 (age 21) 6 2 Minnesota United
4FW Thabiso Kutumela (1993-07-02)2 July 1993 (age 28) 5 2 Mamelodi Sundowns
3MF Fagrie Lakay (1997-05-31)31 May 1997 (age 24) 3 0 Cape Town City F.C.
4FW Tshegofatso Mabaso (1996-08-01)1 August 1996 (age 25) 1 0 Orlando Pirates

Recent call-ups

The following players were called up to a squad in the last 12 months. Caps and goals relate to the time at which the matches were played.

Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club Latest call-up
GK Sifiso Mlungwana (1997-04-27)27 April 1997 (age 24) 0 0 Lamontville Golden Arrows F.C. vs.Zimbabwe, 3 September 2021
GK Itumeleng Khune (1987-06-20)20 June 1987 (age 34) 91 0 Kaizer Chiefs vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021

DF Innocent Maela (1992-08-14)14 August 1992 (age 29) 12 0 Orlando Pirates vs.Zimbabwe, 3 September 2021
DF Sibusiso Mabiliso (1999-04-14)14 April 1999 (age 22) 1 0 Kaizer Chiefs vs.Zimbabwe, 3 September 2021
DF Thapelo Morena (1993-08-06)6 August 1993 (age 28) 14 0 Mamelodi Sundowns vs.Zimbabwe, 3 September 2021
DF Thabani Dube (1992-11-16)16 November 1992 (age 29) 6 0 Kaizer Chiefs vs.Zimbabwe, 3 September 2021
DF Thulani Hlatshwayo (1989-12-18)18 December 1989 (age 32) 52 4 Orlando Pirates vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021

MF Sipho Mbule (1998-03-22)22 March 1998 (age 23) 3 0 SuperSport United F.C. vs.Zimbabwe, 3 September 2021
MF Sphelele Mkhulise (1996-02-19)19 February 1996 (age 25) 6 2 Mamelodi Sundowns F.C. vs.Zimbabwe, 3 September 2021
MF Siyethemba Sithebe (1993-01-06)6 January 1993 (age 29) 8 0 AmaZulu vs.Zimbabwe, 3 September 2021
MF Kobamelo Kodisang (1999-08-28)28 August 1999 (age 22) 0 0 S.C. Braga B vs.Zimbabwe, 3 September 2021
MF Sphephelo Sithole (1999-03-03)3 March 1999 (age 22) 0 0 Belenenses SAD vs.Zimbabwe, 3 September 2021
MF Rivaldo Coetzee (1996-10-16)16 October 1996 (age 25) 24 0 Mamelodi Sundowns vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021
MF Dean Furman (1988-06-22)22 June 1988 (age 33) 59 4 Altrincham vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021
MF Andile Jali (1990-04-10)10 April 1990 (age 31) 48 5 Mamelodi Sundowns vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021
MF Ben Motshwari (1991-03-21)21 March 1991 (age 30) 1 0 Orlando Pirates vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021
MF Thulani Serero (1990-04-11)11 April 1990 (age 31) 44 2 Al Jazira Club vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021
MF Bongani Zungu (1992-10-09)9 October 1992 (age 29) 32 5 Amiens vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021
MF Themba Zwane (1989-08-03)3 August 1989 (age 32) 26 4 Mamelodi Sundowns vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021
MF Ayanda Patosi (1992-10-31)31 October 1992 (age 29) 12 3 Foolad vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021

FW Vincent Pule (1992-03-10)10 March 1992 (age 29) 2 0 Orlando Pirates vs.Ethiopia, 9 October 2021
FW Gift Links (1998-10-02)2 October 1998 (age 23) 5 0 Aarhus Gymnastikforening vs.Zimbabwe, 3 September 2021
FW Luther Singh (1997-08-05)5 August 1997 (age 24) 10 3 F.C. Copenhagen vs.Zimbabwe, 3 September 2021
FW Kermit Erasmus (1990-07-08)8 July 1990 (age 31) 20 2 Mamelodi Sundowns vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021
FW Lyle Foster (2000-09-03)3 September 2000 (age 21) 5 0 Westerlo vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021
FW Ruzaigh Gamildien (1989-04-04)4 April 1989 (age 32) 3 0 Moroka Swallows vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021
FW Bradley Grobler (1988-01-25)25 January 1988 (age 33) 12 2 SuperSport United vs.Sudan, 28 March 2021

Aaron Mokoena became the first, and to date only, South African player to reach 100 caps on 31 May 2010, against Guatemala; to celebrate he wore a kit with the number 100 on the back.

As of 14 November 2021
Players in bold text are still active with South Africa.

Most appearances

Rank Player Caps Goals Career
1 Aaron Mokoena 107 1 1999–2010
2 Itumeleng Khune 91 0 2008–present
3 Siphiwe Tshabalala 89 12 2006–2017
4 Siyabonga Nomvethe 82 16 1999–2012
5 Benni McCarthy 81 31 1997–2012
6 Shaun Bartlett 74 28 1995–2005
7 John Moshoeu 73 8 1992–2004
8 Delron Buckley 72 10 1999–2008
Bernard Parker 72 23 2007–2015
10 Lucas Radebe 70 2 1992–2003
Teko Modise and Siphiwe Tshabalala are the only two players that have scored 10 and more goals where South Africa has never lost a game when they have scored.

Top goalscorers

Rank Player Goals Caps Ratio Career
1 Benni McCarthy 31 81 0.39 1997–2012
2 Shaun Bartlett 28 74 0.38 1995–2005
3 Katlego Mphela 23 53 0.43 2005–2013
Bernard Parker 23 72 0.32 2007–2015
5 Phil Masinga 19 58 0.33 1992–2001
6 Siyabonga Nomvethe 16 82 0.2 1999–2012
7 Sibusiso Zuma 13 67 0.19 1998–2008
Percy Tau 13 34 0.38 2017–present
9 Tokelo Rantie 12 41 0.29 2012–2017
Siphiwe Tshabalala 12 89 0.13 2006–2017
Benni McCarthy is the first player to have scored a hat-trick for South Africa.

List of South Africa hat-tricks

Key
More than a hat-trick scored *
No. Player Opponent Goals Goal Times Score Venue Competition Date Ref(s)
1 Benni McCarthy Namibia
4*
8',11',19',21' 4 – 1 Stade Omnisport, Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso 1998 Africa Cup of Nations 16 February 1998
2 Victor Letsoalo Lesotho
3
5',44',57' 4 – 0 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth, South Africa 2021 COSAFA Cup 13 July 2021

FIFA World Cup

Although South Africa has made three appearances in the World Cup, they have not made it past the first round. The team's first attempt to qualify was for the 1994 World Cup. The team finished second in their group, behind Nigeria, who went on to play at the World Cup.

Their first appearance was in France 1998, six years after they had been readmitted to FIFA. Despite a 3–0 drubbing to France in their opening game, they went on to draw against Denmark and Saudi Arabia; the team finished third and thus exited the tournament. Korea/Japan 2002 was expected to be an opportunity for Bafana Bafana to step up to the next level, but they were eliminated at the group stage despite drawing to Paraguay and beating Slovenia 1–0 for their first-ever World Cup win. The team finished third in their group, losing out to Paraguay on goal difference.

The team failed to qualify for the 2006 World Cup after finishing third in their qualifying group. Ghana won the group and progressed to the tournament, while Congo DR finished ahead of South Africa on head to head results. During the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, they beat France 2–1 and drew 1–1 to Mexico, but lost 0–3 to Uruguay. They failed to advance to the round of 16, on goal difference, for their second World Cup in a row.

FIFA World Cup record FIFA World Cup qualification record
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA Pld W D L GF GA
1930 Did not enter Did not enter
1934
1938
1950
1954
1958
1962
1966 Not admitted Not admitted
1970 Banned Banned
1974
1978
1982
1986
1990
1994 Did not qualify 4 2 1 1 2 4
1998 Group stage 24th 3 0 2 1 3 6 8 6 1 1 11 3
2002 Group stage 17th 3 1 1 1 5 5 8 7 1 0 13 3
2006 Did not qualify 10 5 1 4 12 14
2010 Group stage 20th 3 1 1 1 3 5 Qualified as hosts
2014 Did not qualify 6 3 2 1 12 5
2018 8 3 1 4 11 11
2022 6 4 1 1 6 2
2026 To be determined To be determined
Total Group stage 3/22 9 2 4 3 11 16 50 30 8 12 67 42
South Africa's World Cup record
First Match
France 3–0South Africa
(12 June 1998; Marseille, France)
Biggest Win
Biggest Defeat
France 3–0South Africa
(12 June 1998; Marseille, France)

Best Result
17th place at the 2002 World Cup
Worst Result
24th place at the 1998 World Cup

FIFA Confederations Cup

FIFA Confederations Cup record
Year Round Position Pld W D* L GF GA Squad
1992 Banned
1995 Did not qualify
1997 Group Stage 8th 3 0 1 2 5 7 Squad
1999 Did not qualify
2001
2003
2005
2009 Fourth Place 4th 5 1 1 3 4 6 Squad
2013 Did not qualify
2017
Total Third Place 2/10 8 1 2 5 9 13 -
South Africa's Confederations Cup record
First Match
Biggest Win
Biggest Defeat
Best Result
Fourth Place at the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup
Worst Result

Africa Cup of Nations

Africa Cup of Nations record
Year Round Position Pld W D* L GF GA
1957 Disqualified because of apartheid
1959 Banned
1962
1963
1965
1968
1970
1972
1974
1976
1978
1980
1982
1984
1986
1988
1990
1992
1994 Did not qualify
1996 Champions 1st 6 5 0 1 11 2
1998 Runners-up 2nd 6 3 2 1 9 6
2000 Third place 3rd 6 3 2 1 8 6
2002 Quarter-finals 6th 4 1 2 1 3 3
2004 Group stage 11th 3 1 1 1 3 5
2006 16th 3 0 0 3 0 5
2008 13th 3 0 2 1 3 5
2010 Did not qualify
2012
2013 Quarter-finals 6th 4 1 2 1 5 3
2015 Group stage 15th 3 0 1 2 3 6
2017 Did not qualify
2019 Quarter-finals 7th 5 2 0 3 3 4
2021 Did not qualify
2023 To be determined
2025
Total 1 Title 10/33 43 16 12 15 48 45
*Red border color indicates tournament was held on home soil.
South Africa's Africa Cup of Nations record
First Match
Biggest Win
Biggest Defeat
Nigeria 4–0South Africa
(31 January 2004; Monastir, Tunisia)
Best Result
Worst Result
16th place at the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations

African Nations Championship record

African Nations Championship
Appearances: 2
Year Round Position Pld W D* L GF GA
2009 Did not qualify
2011 Quarter-finals 6th 4 3 0 1 6 4
2014 Group stage 9th 3 1 1 1 5 5
2016 Did not qualify
2018
2020 To be determined
2022
Total Quarter-finals 2/5 7 4 1 2 11 9

African Games

Football at the African Games has been an under-23 tournament since 1991.
African Games record
Year Result GP W D L GS GA
1965 - 0 0 0 0 0 0
1973 - 0 0 0 0 0 0
1978 - 0 0 0 0 0 0
1987 - 0 0 0 0 0 0
1991–present See South Africa national under-23 football team
Total 4/4 0 0 0 0 0 0

COSAFA Cup

Main article: COSAFA Cup
COSAFA Cup Record
Year Rank Pld W D L GF GA
1997 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
1998 0 1 0 0 1 2 3
1999 0 2 1 1 0 3 2
2000 0 3 2 0 1 5 1
2001 0 2 1 0 1 3 1
2002 1 5 3 2 0 8 2
2003 6 1 0 0 1 0 1
2004 8 1 0 0 1 0 2
2005 3 3 2 1 0 6 2
2006 0 2 1 1 0 1 0
2007 1 4 2 2 0 3 0
2008 1 3 3 0 0 4 1
2009 4 3 1 1 1 3 2
South Africa national soccer team Article Talk Language Watch Edit 160 160 Redirected from South Africa national football team This article is about the men s team For the women s team see South Africa women s national football team The South Africa national football team represents South Africa in men s international soccer and it is run by the South African Football Association the governing body for Soccer in South Africa The team s nickname is Bafana Bafana and South Africa s home ground is FNB Stadium which is located in Johannesburg The team s greatest result was winning the Africa Cup of Nations at home in 1996 The team is a member of both FIFA and Confederation of African Football CAF South AfricaNickname s Bafana BafanaAssociationSouth African Football AssociationConfederationCAF Africa Sub confederationCOSAFA Southern Africa Head coachHugo BroosCaptainRonwen WilliamsMost capsAaron Mokoena 107 Top scorerBenni McCarthy 31 Home stadiumFNB StadiumFIFA codeRSAFirst coloursSecond coloursThird coloursFIFA rankingCurrent68 23 December 2021 1 Highest16 August 1996 Lowest124 December 1992 First international Argentina 0 1 South Africa Buenos Aires Argentina 9 July 1906 2 Biggest win Australia 0 8 South Africa Adelaide Australia 17 September 1955 3 Biggest defeatUnofficial South Africa 1 9 Great Britain Cape Town South Africa 17 July 1920 Official South Africa 0 5 Brazil Johannesburg South Africa 5 March 2014 World CupAppearances3 first in 1998 Best resultGroup stage 1998 2002 2010 Africa Cup of NationsAppearances10 first in 1996 Best resultChampions 1996 CONCACAF Gold CupAppearances1 first in 2005 Best resultQuarter finals 2005 African Nations ChampionshipAppearances2 first in 2011 Best resultQuarter finals 2011 COSAFA CupAppearances18 first in 1998 Best resultChampions 2002 2007 2008 2016 2021 Medal record CAF Africa Cup of Nations1996 South Africa Team1998 Burkina Faso Team2000 Nigeria and Ghana TeamCOSAFA Cup2002 Southern Africa2007 Southern Africa2008 South Africa2016 Namibia Team2021 South Africa2013 Zambia Team Having played their first match in 1906 they returned to the world stage in 1992 after 16 years of being banned from FIFA and 40 years of effective suspension due to the apartheid system 6 South Africa became the first African nation to host the FIFA World Cup when it was granted host status for the 2010 edition The team s Siphiwe Tshabalala was also the first player to score in this World Cup during the opening game against Mexico which was followed by an iconic Macarena style goal celebration from five South African players 7 8 Despite defeating France 2 1 in their final game of the Group Stage they failed to progress from the first round of the tournament becoming the first host nation in the history of the FIFA World Cup to exit in the group stage 9 Despite this the team ranked 20th out of 32 sides ranking higher than 12 teams who qualified Contents 1 History 1 1 Pre 1992 1 2 1992 1994 Readmission 1 3 1996 1998 Rise 1 4 2000 2002 Peak and coaching instability 1 5 2002 2006 Decline and coaching roundabout 1 6 2007 2010 Hosting the World Cup 1 7 2012 2014 Continued struggles 1 8 2014 2016 1 9 2017 present promising generation 2 Team image 2 1 Nickname 2 2 Home stadium 2 3 Media coverage 2 4 Sponsors 3 Results and fixtures 3 1 2021 4 Coaching staff 4 1 Coaching history 5 Players 5 1 Current squad 5 2 Recent call ups 6 Past squads 7 Records 7 1 Most appearances 7 2 Top goalscorers 7 3 List of South Africa hat tricks 8 Competitive record 8 1 FIFA World Cup 8 2 FIFA Confederations Cup 8 3 Africa Cup of Nations 8 4 African Nations Championship record 8 5 African Games 8 6 COSAFA Cup 9 All time record against other nations 9 1 By Federation 10 Honours 11 References 12 External linksHistory EditMain article Soccer in South Africa Pre 1992 Edit Soccer first arrived in South Africa through colonialism in the late nineteenth century as the game was popular among British soldiers 10 From the earliest days of the sport in South Africa until the end of apartheid organised soccer was affected by the country s system of racial segregation The all white Football Association of South Africa FASA was formed in 1892 while the South African Indian Football Association SAIFA the South African Bantu Football Association SABFA and the South African Coloured Football Association SACFA were founded in 1903 1933 and 1936 respectively The South African team that toured South America in 1906 They played 12 matches with only one defeat In 1903 the SAFA re affiliated with the English Football Association after the Second Boer War between the British Empire and the Boer state There was a plan to play a tournament held in Argentina with South Africa and Fulham as guest teams but it was not carried out Nevertheless South Africa traveled to South America in 1906 to play a series of friendly matches there 11 South Africa played a total of 12 matches in South America winning 11 with 60 goals scored and only 7 conceded Some of the rivals were Belgrano A C Argentina national team a Liga Rosarina combined Estudiantes BA and Quilmes 12 The only team that could beat South Africa was the Argentine Alumni by 1 0 at Sociedad Sportiva stadium of Buenos Aires on June 24 although the South Africans would take revenge on July 22 defeating the Alumni by 2 0 13 The players were exclusively white civil servants government employees bankers and civil engineers Seven of the 15 players were born in South Africa and 8 originated from England and Scotland 11 South Africa was one of four African nations to attend FIFA s 1953 congress at which the four demanded and won representation on the FIFA executive committee 14 Thus the four nations South Africa Ethiopia Egypt and Sudan founded the Confederation of African Football in 1956 14 and the South African representative Fred Fell sat at the first meeting as a founding member It soon became clear however that South Africa s constitution prohibited racially mixed teams from competitive sport and so they could only send either an all black side or an all white side to the planned 1957 African Cup of Nations This was unacceptable to the other members of the Confederation and South Africa were disqualified from the competition however some sources say that they withdrew voluntarily 15 At the second CAF conference in 1958 South Africa were formally expelled from CAF The all white FASA were admitted to FIFA in the same year but in August 1960 it was given an ultimatum of one year to fall in line with the non discriminatory regulations of FIFA On 26 September 1961 at the annual FIFA conference the South African association was formally suspended from FIFA Sir Stanley Rous president of The Football Association of England and a champion of South Africa s FIFA membership was elected FIFA President a few days later Rous was adamant that sport and FIFA in particular should not embroil itself in political matters and against fierce opposition he continued to resist attempts to expel South Africa from FIFA The suspension was lifted in January 1963 after a visit to South Africa by Rous in order to investigate the state of soccer in the country Rous declared that if the suspension were not lifted soccer there would be discontinued possibly to the point of no recovery The next annual conference of FIFA in October 1964 took place in Tokyo and was attended by a larger contingent of representatives from African and Asian associations and here the suspension of South Africa s membership was re imposed In 1976 after the Soweto uprising they were formally expelled from FIFA In 1991 when the apartheid system was beginning to be demolished a new multi racial South African Football Association was formed and admitted to FIFA and thus finally allowing South Africa to enter the qualifying stages for subsequent World Cups 16 1992 1994 Readmission Edit After spending nearly two decades in international isolation the South African national team played its first game on 7 July 1992 beating Cameroon 1 0 at Kings Park in Durban The team entered the 1994 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers and was placed in Group 5 along with Mauritius Zambia and Zimbabwe They won one game away to Mauritius and drew with Mauritius and Zimbabwe at home The team finished third in the group and failed to qualify For the 1994 FIFA World Cup qualifiers South Africa was placed in Group D along with Congo Libya and Nigeria Libya withdrew from the qualifiers South Africa beat Congo home and away They drew with Nigeria at home and lost away South Africa finished second in the group and failed to qualify for the next stage of the qualifiers 1996 1998 Rise Edit In 1996 a mere 5 years after readmission South Africa achieved their finest moment when they hosted and won the 1996 Africa Cup of Nations in the process reaching the lofty heights of 16th in the FIFA rankings The shock firing of Cup of Nations winning coach Clive Barker did little to slow momentum as they followed their 1996 success with a second placed finish at the 1998 Africa Cup of Nations after Egypt under Jomo Sono The team had earned their first appearance at the FIFA World Cup qualifying for France 98 Under head coach Philippe Troussier South Africa suffered a heavy 3 0 defeat to hosts France in their World Cup debut but played credibly against other group opponents Denmark and Asian juggernauts Saudi Arabia earning 1 1 and 2 2 draws respectively on their way to an early exit 2000 2002 Peak and coaching instability Edit Following their successful 1996 and 1998 Africa Cup of Nations campaigns and their World Cup debut in 1998 South Africa were seen as a growing power on the continent Under the coaching of the newly hired Trott Moloto they would start the decade off strongly finishing third in the 2000 edition of the Africa Cup of Nations but as was increasingly symptomatic of soccer in South Africa at the national level yet another coaching change was made Portuguese Carlos Queiroz was hired as the man to take South Africa to the 2002 FIFA World Cup South Africa qualified for the 2002 Africa Cup of Nations and were eliminated in the quarter finals against hosts Mali In the run up to the 2002 FIFA World Cup for which South Africa had easily qualified for as winners of Group E Queiroz left his post as head coach amid increasing behind the scenes political wrangling Former legend Jomo Sono was brought back in a caretaker capacity to lead South Africa in Korea Japan Placed in Group B along with Spain Paraguay and debutants Slovenia at the 2002 FIFA World Cup South Africa had high hopes of progressing to the knockout phase of the tournament After earning a 2 2 draw against Paraguay in their opening game with a last gasp penalty from Quinton Fortune and following it up with their first ever victory at the finals with a 1 0 win over Slovenia South Africa headed into their final game against Spain second in the group and 3 points clear of Paraguay and Slovenia In arguably the game of the group in which 5 goals were scored inside the hour South Africa twice came from a goal down in an agonising 3 2 defeat to the Spanish In the other game which kicked off at the same time as the South Africa Spain game Paraguay found themselves beating Slovenia 2 1 but the result was not enough for Paraguay to surpass South Africa in the standings as South Africa s goal difference of zero was superior to Paraguay s minus one But South African hearts would be broken With 84 minutes gone in the Slovenia Paraguay game Nelson Cuevas bagged a vital third goal for Paraguay giving Paraguay a 3 1 victory over Slovenia The win left both Paraguay and South Africa level on 4 points with the late Cuevas strike against Slovenia lifting Paraguay s goal difference to zero level with South Africa s The deciding factor moved onto a third tiebreaker goals scored and as Paraguay had scored six goals to South Africa s five they progressed to the Round of 16 at the expense of South Africa What made the early exit all the more heartbreaking was that South Africa was the only team in the group that managed to hold its own against runaway group winners Spain as both Slovenia and Paraguay were comfortably cast aside 3 1 by the Spanish This era 1996 2002 of rising soccer prowess saw South Africa blessed with fine footballers such as record setting goalscorers Benni McCarthy amp Shaun Bartlett defensive hardmen and inspirational captains Lucas Radebe amp Neil Tovey creative maestros John Moshoeu amp Doctor Khumalo and defensive stalwart Mark Fish 2002 2006 Decline and coaching roundabout Edit In the period following the 2002 World Cup and leading up to the 2006 FIFA World Cup South Africa would go through 4 head coaches Ephraim Mashaba 2002 2004 April Phumo 2004 Stuart Baxter 2004 2005 Ted Dumitru 2005 2006 and caretaker Pitso Mosimane 2006 Neither coach was able to match the successes seen in the period 1996 2002 as South Africa failed to progress beyond the group stages in either the 2004 Africa Cup of Nations or 2006 Africa Cup of Nations failing to register a single goal in the latter Above all though South Africa failed to qualify for the 2006 FIFA World Cup After being placed in Group 2 for qualifying South Africa were beaten to Germany by Ghana Following poor performances in both the 2004 and 2006 Africa Cup of Nations rumours circulated that SAFA had been attempting to attract a high profile international manager to coach Bafana Bafana and that former England boss Sven Goran Eriksson had been targeted This rumour however has been denied 2007 2010 Hosting the World Cup Edit South Africa vs Uruguay at the 2010 FIFA World Cup By failing to register a single goal at the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations and by missing out on Germany 2006 local supporters had become increasingly unhappy with the decline in performance of the national team In light of these poor performances it was decided that the hiring of a more experienced manager was essential Former World Cup winner and Brazilian national team coach Carlos Alberto Parreira was approached for the job and he accepted He signed a R100 million contract covering four years His term as manager started 1 January 2007 targeting the 2010 FIFA World Cup which South Africa had been awarded the right to host becoming the first African nation to ever host association football s global showpiece Under Parreira with his rich history of success at the international level South Africa was expected to improve but early signs were not good as they would exit the 2008 Africa Cup of Nations at the first hurdle once again To make matters worse Parreira stood down as coach in April 2008 due to family reasons Joel Santana was hand picked by Parreira to succeed him and he was signed to coach the team until 2010 17 Under Santana South Africa would slide into its darkest period in international soccer since readmission Failing to even qualify for the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations with soccer characterised by a complete lack of creativity and little goal scoring threat South Africa tumbled down the FIFA rankings and was at one point not even ranked among Africa s top 10 nations Santana was fired in 2009 and Parreira would return in time for the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup also hosted by South Africa and South Africa would see an improvement in performance holding its own against eventual world champions Spain and perennial powerhouse Brazil the latter requiring an 88th minute goal to overcome South Africa in the semi finals South Africa would ultimately finish 4th following a thrilling 3 2 loss to the Spanish in the 3rd 4th Place Playoff A string of victories albeit against marginal opposition in the run up to the 2010 FIFA World Cup seemed to instill a sense of confidence in the team as well as the nation For the 2010 World Cup the first in Africa South Africa was placed in Group A along with Mexico surprise package and eventual semi finalists Uruguay and former world champions France South Africa played the first game which opened the World Cup 2010 tournament with a 1 1 draw against Mexico after taking the lead through a wonderful long range Siphiwe Tshabalala strike Katlego Mphela would hit the post late into the game as South Africa buoyed by a frenzied home crowd so very nearly opened the tournament with a win A heavy 3 0 defeat in the second group game against Uruguay and a Mexican win over France left South Africa with a mountain to climb in order to progress beyond the group stage For the deciding match against France Parreira would discard his previous tactics of a defensive minded five man midfield and a lone forward in favour of a more attacking formation utilising two forwards as up until the France game South Africa had focused more on not losing than they did on trying to win but the heavy defeat against Uruguay coupled with Mexico s victory over France had now left them with a goal difference of negative three that needed to be overcome in order for them to progress South Africa would also require a favour from Uruguay needing the Uruguayans to inflict a sizeable defeat on Mexico to aid their chances of progress The change in tactics worked as South Africa gained the upper hand over the French attacking at will At the half South Africa had a 2 0 lead thanks to goals from Bongani Khumalo amp Katlego Mphela while Uruguay were beating Mexico 1 0 in the other group game As it stood South Africa needed at least one more goal against France while Uruguay needed to double their lead against Mexico Sadly it was not to be as while South Africa did secure an historic victory over France they failed to score again and conceded a late goal for a 2 1 victory while the Uruguayans had failed to add to their lead as they ran out 1 0 victors over Mexico For the second World Cup in a row South Africa finished level on points with second place but were eliminated this time on goal difference while it had been on goals scored in 2002 Elimination in the group stage made South Africa the first hosts to fail to progress beyond the first round of a World Cup South Africa France starting lineups 2010 06 22 Pos Teamvte Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification1 Uruguay 3 2 1 0 4 0 4 7 Advance to knockout stage2 Mexico 3 1 1 1 3 2 1 43 South Africa H 3 1 1 1 3 5 2 44 France 3 0 1 2 1 4 3 1Source FIFA Rules for classification Tie breaking criteria H Host Following the conclusion of the World Cup and the expiration of his contract Carlos Alberto Parreira announced his retirement from coaching As part of his contract Parreira had also drawn up a plan of recommendations extending as far as soccer development at grass roots level that SAFA was encouraged to review in the hopes of reviving the fortunes of the national soccer team Pitso Mosimane who had been Parreira s assistant was selected as the new head coach with Parreira s blessings 2012 2014 Continued struggles Edit South Africa failed to qualify for the Africa Cup of Nations finals after the rules were misread 18 They ultimately played for and achieved a draw at home in Nelspruit against Sierra Leone in a game they needed to win when news about Niger trailing in Egypt was received leading to the qualification of Niger at their expense and also at Sierra Leone s They then celebrated at the end as if they had qualified making it the second time they would be so embarrassed in 4 years after qualifying as a lucky 3rd and last best runners up for the 2008 edition with Zambia catapulting over South Africa as Group winners after a 3 1 win in Cape Town and thereby gaining an automatic qualifying ticket on head to head record with the South Africans erroneously thinking goal difference would be the primary tie breaker 19 The SABC also announced that the team had qualified and the SAFA president Kirsten Nematandani then congratulated the team on TV before realisation dawned 20 SAFA said they would appeal to CAF but the appeal was later withdrawn 21 22 South Africa continued to disappoint into 2012 opening the year with a lacklustre 0 0 draw away to 2012 Africa Cup of Nations co hosts Equatorial Guinea This would be the start of a run that would see Bafana Bafana rack up 6 successive draws to start the year The run of draws included 1 1 0 0 and 1 1 draws at home to African champions Zambia Ghana and Senegal respectively in International Friendlies Following a 1 1 draw at home to Ethiopia in a 2014 World Cup qualifier head coach Pitso Mosimane was fired 23 The draw increased South Africa s streak to 7 games without a win Mosimane was replaced as head coach by Steve Komphela on an interim basis while SAFA interviewed potential candidates to fill the post on a permanent basis In his first game in charge as interim head coach Komphela oversaw yet another uninspired performance in South Africa s second World Cup qualifier against Botswana as they drew yet again extending their winless run to 8 games Bafana Bafana finally tasted victory when they defeated Gabon 3 0 at home in a friendly ending their winless streak Komphela along with Gordon Igesund Gavin Hunt Neil Tovey and Ephraim Shakes Mashaba had been shortlisted as one of the candidates to be the next head coach of South Africa 24 with Komphela and Igesund emerging as the front runners 25 On 30 June 2012 Gordon Igesund was appointed as the new head coach 26 Following the crisis in Libya throughout 2011 CAF made the decision to move the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations from Libya who were the original hosts to South Africa on the grounds of safety and security Libya was then given the right to host the 2017 edition of the tournament which was originally awarded to South Africa 27 As hosts of the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations South Africa would automatically qualify for the competition South Africa as hosts were seeded and drawn in Group A along with Angola Morocco and tournament debutants Cape Verde 28 South Africa kicked the tournament off on 19 January against debutants Cape Verde at a wet National Stadium South Africa made use of a defensive formation as coach Gordon Igesund deployed two deep midfielders in Kagisho Dikgacoi and Reneilwe Letsholonyane and along with the poor weather conditions delivered an uninspired performance resulting in a 0 0 draw In the hosts second group game against Angola coach Igesund dropped his midfield pairing of Dikgacoi and Letsholonyane and opted for a new midfield pairing of the defensive minded Dean Furman and the more attacking May Mahlangu The result was a far more confident display as Dean Furman took control of the midfield something that was lacking in the first game and delivered a man of the match performance South Africa ran out winners with goals from Siyabonga Sangweni and Lehlohonolo Majoro setting up a 2 0 victory Heading into the final group game against Morocco South Africa only had to avoid defeat in order to progress to the knockout stages while Morocco needed a win to progress South Africa put in a woeful first half performance that saw them 1 0 down at half time and struggling with the Moroccans direct approach It was only thanks to the heroics of goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune who pulled off a string of stunning saves that South Africa were not further behind An improved second half saw South Africa fight back with an equaliser from May Mahlangu but South Africa continued to look vulnerable against Morocco s direct approach and subsequently fell behind again in the 81st minute But typical of their improved tenacity in the second half South Africa swiftly responded through a Siyabonga Sangweni equaliser in the 86th minute South Africa hung on to the draw with the result enough to see them win group A and progress to the quarterfinals Sangweni s late equaliser would prove vital as an injury time winner by Cape Verde in their final game against Angola would have seen Morocco and Cape Verde progress at the expense of South Africa but as it was South Africa went through along with Cape Verde who enjoyed a stunning debut in Africa s showpiece tournament South Africa were drawn against Group B runners up Mali in the quarterfinals South Africa delivered a stunning first half performance playing at a high tempo to negate the Malians superior physical presence Unable to keep up with the pace of the game Mali were overwhelmed as South Africa carved out chance after chance finally making the breakthrough in the 31st minute as Thuso Phala drove into the box and fired a low cross across the goalmouth which an open Tokelo Rantie pounced on South Africa headed into the break 1 0 up However in the second half led by veteran midfielder and captain Seydou Keita the Malians began to impose themselves and equalised in the 58th minute amid a momentary defensive collapse as the South African defense allowed captain Keita to head home an unchallenged cross From that point on it was Mali that controlled the game Neither side was able to secure a winner and the game headed into extra time After another goalless 30 minutes the game moved to penalties Siphiwe Tshabalala took the first penalty and gave South Africa the lead with a stunningly placed shot into the top left corner Cheick Diabate would swiftly respond Then South Africa s tournament proceeded to unravel Dean Furman was next up for South Africa but he saw his weak shot easily saved by goalkeeper Soumbeila Diakite Adama Tamboura would score Mali s second penalty handing them the advantage In an almost carbon copy of Furman s penalty May Mahlangu s penalty was also easily saved low to the left by goalkeeper Diakite Mahamane Traore confidently dispatched Mali s third penalty handing them a comfortable 3 1 cushion Lehlohonolo Majoro was next up for South Africa but the pressure was too much as he fired a wild shot high and to the right of the goal With the miss South Africa were eliminated from the tournament 3 1 on penalties After a poor 2012 in which South Africa had performed poorly and had steadily slid down FIFA s rankings their performance in the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations was a marked improvement Although coach Gordon Igesund had been handed the almost impossible task of a semifinal berth as a target in his contract SAFA came out and said the signs of improvement were sufficient enough for Igesund s job to remain safe South Africa received a First Round bye when the qualifying process for the 2014 FIFA World Cup got underway on 30 July 2011 For the Second Round of the qualifying process South Africa was placed in Pot 1 as a top seeded nation for the draw from where they were drawn into Group A along with neighbours Botswana the Central African Republic and Ethiopia South Africa opened their qualifying campaign with a dismal performance struggling to overcome a one goal deficit in a 1 1 home draw with Ethiopia a nation ranked nearly 70 places below them This result coupled with the less than inspiring string of results that had seen South Africa winless in the past 6 outings that preceded it resulted in the sacking of head coach Pitso Mosimane Under interim head coach Steve Khompela South Africa played out to yet another uninspiring 1 1 draw this time away to Botswana Following on from a positive display in the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations Gordon Igesund guided South Africa to their first victory in the 2014 World Cup qualifiers as they beat the Central African Republic 2 0 in Cape Town South Africa continued their push for a place at the World Cup with a 3 0 win over the Central African Republic on 8 June South Africa endured a difficult build up to the game as they were only able to practice once before the game due to a delayed connecting flight but they performed admirably against their physical opponents on a bumpy pitch The win was South Africa s first away win in a World Cup qualifier since 2005 Ethiopia also won their match away to Botswana on the same day maintaining their 2 point lead over South Africa South Africa and Ethiopia met in a potential group decider in Addis Ababa on 16 June with the Ethiopians going undefeated at home in 12 games South Africa were under pressure from the kick off and as early as the 3rd minute goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune was forced into a stunning save South Africa would recover to take a 1 0 lead through a stunning left footed half volley from Bernard Parker in the 33rd minute The lead was short lived as Ethiopia equalised in the 44th minute following a defensive lapse by South Africa when they failed to deal with a loose ball on the edge of the box Ethiopia would secure the win thanks to a stunning own goal by Bernard Parker in the 70th minute as he headed the ball into his own net from a free kick The 2 1 defeat ended South Africa s qualification hopes and assured Ethiopia passage to the third and final round of qualifying However following the match it emerged that Ethiopia were under investigation for fielding an ineligible player during their 2 1 win over Botswana and that they could face losing the 3 points and have the result reversed to a 3 0 defeat as in line with FIFA sanctions This would give South Africa an outside chance of qualifying for Brazil Ethiopia later admitted to the error 29 On Tuesday 19 June it was reported in the South African press that Ethiopia had again fielded the same player against South Africa with the player still to serve his one match ban and it might be possible that Ethiopia could face losing another 3 points to South Africa Should this happen South Africa would then qualify for the next round at the expense of Ethiopia 30 South Africa failed to qualify These were the final standings Teamvte Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Ethiopia 6 4 1 1 8 6 2 13 2 1 1 0 2 0 South Africa 6 3 2 1 12 5 7 11 1 1 4 1 2 0 Botswana 6 2 1 3 8 10 2 7 3 0 a 1 1 3 2 Central African Republic 6 1 0 5 5 12 7 3 1 2 0 3 2 0 Source citation needed Notes Awarded 2014 2016 Edit South Africa s first match under new coach Ephraim Mashaba was a Group A qualifying match for AFCON 2015 played at Al Merrikh Stadium against Sudan on 5 September 2014 South Africa won the match 3 0 with two goals from Sibusiso Vilakazi in the 55th and 61st minutes and a goal from Bongani Ndulula in the 78th minute 31 South Africa s second match in the AFCON qualifiers was a home match at Cape Town Stadium against Nigeria on 10 September South Africa held off the defending AFCON champions for a 0 0 draw 32 Following these two matches Bafana Bafana moved up two places to 67th in the FIFA world ranking 33 South Africa then took on Congo at the Stade Municipal de Pointe Noire on 11 October The game was won 2 0 with goals from Bongani Ndulula and Tokelo Rantie in the second half This victory brought South Africa to the top of Group A 34 Next was the return match in Polokwane s Peter Mokaba Stadium The game ended in a 0 0 stalemate which kept South Africa at the top of the group 35 Following these two matches South Africa climbed ten places in the FIFA rankings to no 57 36 Next up was the second match against Sudan on 15 November which was won 2 1 with goals from Thulani Serero in the 37th minute and Tokelo Rantie in the 54th minute The game was originally scheduled to be played at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit but it was moved to the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban in honour of captain and goalkeeper Senzo Meyiwa who was shot and killed two weeks prior to the game Coach Ephraim Mashaba said the win was for the fallen hero who had not conceded a goal in the four qualifiers he had played The result sealed qualification for South Africa with an away game versus Nigeria to spare It was the first time since 2008 that Bafana managed to qualify for the tournament in 2013 they qualified as hosts after Libya exchanged their rights for security reasons 37 38 The last game of the qualifiers was on 19 November at the Akwa Ibom Stadium in Uyo Nigeria It ended 2 2 therefore eliminating Nigeria and denying them the chance to defend their crown at 2015 AFCON The coach Ephraim Mashaba had earlier said that South Africa would not do Nigeria any favours It showed in the way that the South Africans approached the match Tokelo Rantie missed a sitter in the fourth minute when he fluffed his chance over the bar but he made amends when he opened the scoring in the 42nd minute after a neat pass from Dean Furman It looked as if South Africa would get their first competitive win over Nigeria when Rantie doubled his and his country s tally in the 48th minute But it wasn t to be as they failed to hold on for a historic win Nigeria came back to draw 2 2 but it wasn t enough to secure Nigeria s qualification as Congo beat Sudan 1 0 to book their place at the tournament Under Mashaba South Africa failed to qualify for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations This in addition to the various controversies disparaging remarks that Mashaba allegedly made about SAFA top officials his supposedly arrogant nature and his ill treatment of overseas based stars led to his suspension after leading South Africa to a 2 1 victory over Senegal in a 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier 2017 present promising generation Edit After being unable to reach the 2018 FIFA World Cup South Africa had undergone a systematic reformation and transformation to regain its status as an African soccer power The reformation of South African soccer was aided by the successful rise of its under age soccer including the U 17 U 20 and U 23 teams that all achieved some African successes and participated in World tournaments at their levels South Africa qualified for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations finishing second and undefeated with a shock 2 0 away win over Nigeria 39 South Africa participated in the tournament grouped with Morocco Ivory Coast and Namibia and narrowly qualified to the knockout stage with only a single 1 0 win over Namibia and had to face host Egypt which had Mohamed Salah winners of AFCON seven times and had just qualified for Russia 2018 World Cup 40 The South Africans then pulled out the biggest upset in the tournament knocking Egypt out in the round of 16 stage with a 1 0 win in Cairo 41 Then South Africa once again faced Nigeria in the quarter finals but there was no further upset as Nigeria prevailed 2 1 but it was regarded as South Africa s best performance in the 2010s 42 Under Molefi Ntseki South Africa failed to qualify for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations Molefi Ntseki was promptly sacked and the Hugo Broos was announced as his replacement Broos immediately set out to restructure the national team and the veteran players Including captain Thulani Hlatshwayo of the team were replaced with an exciting and young crop of players Goalkeeper Ronwen Williams was named as the captain with Percy Tau being named as the vice captain Team image EditNickname Edit Bafana Bafana is a nickname given to the national side by its fans It is Zulu and translates literally as the boys the boys Its actual meaning in Zulu is Go boys Go boys though others take the double use of Bafana to mean all of the boys the team and management as well as the spectators togetherness as in the African concept of ubuntu In July 1992 at Kings Park stadium in Durban fans shouted Bafana bafana GO BOYS GO BOYS when South Africa was on the verge of beating Cameroon and after the game A group of three journalists from South Africa newspaper The Sowetan then began to use the name in print when referring to the team The name was initially used only informally as SAFA felt that it was not commercially viable and that it was degrading to refer to a team of men as boys 43 Standton Woodrush Ltd applied to trademark the name in 1993 The trademark was granted but was for clothing only In 1994 the team s technical sponsor at the time Kappa applied for the trademarks Bafana and Bafana Bafana in class 25 These were granted and subsequently passed on to SAFA In 1997 SAFA filed for the trademark Bafana Bafana for all goods and services in all classes SAFA then applied to have Standton Woodrush Ltd removed from the trade marks register on the grounds that SAFA was the rightful owner of the name The case was dismissed on the ground that SAFA was not an interested person within the meaning of this term as used in the Trade Marks Act No 94 of 1993 which provides that only an interested party has legal standing to seek relief SAFA made another application to gain ownership of the trade mark with the second application going to the Appeal Court The court again found that SAFA did not have the necessary grounds for ownership of the name in all classes The court held that an intention to use a mark does not create a preference to registration and that the proprietor of a trade mark need not be its originator In 2011 SAFA paid R5 million to Standton Woodrush Ltd for rights to the name Bafana Bafana in class 25 and all other classes 44 Home stadium Edit First game of the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa vs Mexico at Soccer City The South Africa national soccer team does not use a single stadium as its home stadium for matches Instead they use a variety of stadiums throughout South Africa to host matches at The largest venue used is the 94 700 seater Soccer City in Soweto outside Johannesburg Other often used venues include the Atteridgeville Super Stadium outside Pretoria the Royal Bafokeng Stadium outside Rustenburg the Free State Stadium in Bloemfontein and Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban Matches have also been hosted at Ellis Park and Johannesburg Stadium in Johannesburg Kings Park in Durban Olympia Park in Rustenburg Cape Town Stadium and Newlands Stadium in Cape Town Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium and the EPRU Stadium in Port Elizabeth Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria Orlando Stadium in Soweto Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane Griqua Park in Kimberley Jan Smuts Stadium and Buffalo City Stadium in East London Odi Stadium in Mabopane Mmabatho Stadium in Mafikeng Atlantic Stadium in Witbank and Olen Park in Potchefstroom The team has also hosted matches outside of South Africa In preparation for the 1998 FIFA World Cup the team hosted a friendly in Baiersbronn Germany As a warm up for the 2002 FIFA World Cup the team hosted a friendly at Mong Kok Stadium in Hong Kong In 2006 the team hosted a Nelson Mandela Challenge match at Griffin Park in London England During their preparations for the 2010 FIFA World Cup the team hosted two matches in Germany The matches were played at the BRITA Arena in Wiesbaden and the Stadion am Bieberer Berg in Offenbach am Main Media coverage Edit The South African Football Association owns the rights to national team matches played in South Africa SAFA currently have a contract with the South African Broadcasting Corporation to broadcast these matches It is up to the SABC to procure the rights to matches played outside of the country The SABC usually shows most national team games though they have often had problems with broadcasting weekday matches They have previously used delayed live footage 45 and sometimes not shown matches 46 Most large tournaments in which the team play such as the FIFA World Cup and Africa Cup of Nations have separate broadcast rights SuperSport purchase the pay TV rights to these tournaments thus during these tournaments they also show South African matches The SABC usually holds the free to air rights to these tournaments with the notable exception being the 2002 FIFA World Cup Those matches were shown by e tv 47 Sponsors Edit When the team returned to international soccer in 1992 their kit was supplied by Italian clothing company Kappa The team wore Kappa kits up to and during the 1998 FIFA World Cup 48 Following the 1998 World Cup the kits for all South African national soccer teams were supplied by German sports apparel company Adidas The sponsorship deal is believed to be worth R14 million per year 49 Their contract with the South African Football Association ran until the end of 2010 On 7 June 2011 SAFA announced Puma as its new technical sponsor and unveiled Bafana Bafana s new kit 50 51 In October 2013 ABSA announced its resignation as a sponsor of SAFA and the South African national team as of the end of their contract in December 2013 This was followed a week later by the announcement from Puma that they too would step down as technical sponsors of Bafana Bafana 52 From March 2014 until June 2020 the official kit provider was American sporting apparel company Nike from the international friendly match against Brazil Since June 2020 the official kit provider has been French sporting apparel company Le Coq Sportif 53 The team now has one main sponsor Castle Lager a brand owned by South African Breweries Smaller sponsors and suppliers include Energade and Tsogo Sun Hotels 54 Kit provider Period Kappa 1992 1998 Adidas 1998 2010 Puma 2011 2013 Nike 2014 2020 Le Coq Sportif 2020 presentResults and fixtures EditMain article South Africa national football team results 2020 present The following matches were played in the last 12 months or are scheduled to be played 2021 Edit South Africa v Uganda 10 June FriendlySouth Africa 3 2 UgandaJohannesburg South Africa18 00 UTC 2 Makgopa 62 83 Hlongwane 67 Report Orit 17 Abdu 89 Stadium Orlando Stadium Referee Audrick Nkole Zambia South Africa v Botswana 6 July 2021 COSAFA Cup Group ASouth Africa 1 0 BotswanaPort Elizabeth17 00 UTC 2 K Malinga 6 R Reuck 8 Report G Mohutsiwa 45 1 Stadium Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium Referee Abongile Tom South Africa South Africa v Eswatini 8 July 2021 COSAFA Cup Group ASouth Africa 1 0 EswatiniPort Elizabeth South Africa15 00 UTC 2 S Mkhulise 42 T Sibanyoni 59 88 Report F Mamba 26 F Badenhorst 26 45 1 Stadium Wolfson Stadium Referee Wilson Julio Muianga Mozambique South Africa v Lesotho 13 July 2021 COSAFA Cup Group ASouth Africa 4 0 LesothoPort Elizabeth South Africa15 00 UTC 2 S Letsoalo 5 44 57 S Mkhulise 20 N Njcobo 74 M Mphahele 89 Report L Fothoane 40 B Makepe 56 M Nkoto 67 T Toloane 73 Stadium Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium Referee Audrick Nkole Zambia South Africa v Zambia 14 July 2021 COSAFA Cup Group DSouth Africa 0 0 ZambiaPort Elizabeth South Africa15 00 UTC 2 Dube 90 Report Chanda 56 Stadium Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium Referee Brighton Chimene Zimbabwe South Africa v Mozambique 16 July 2021 COSAFA Cup Semi finalsSouth Africa 3 0 MozambiquePort Elizabeth South Africa17 00 UTC 2 N Ngcobo 24 62 S Sithebe 39 M Maart 59 S Letsoalo 73 pen Report F Macaime 33 S Shaquille 45 1 D Muze 58 J Pelembe 79 N Ernesto 86 Stadium Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium Referee Brighton Chimene Zimbabwe Senegal v South Africa 18 July 2021 COSAFA Cup FinalSenegal 0 0 a e t 4 5 p South AfricaPort Elizabeth South Africa14 00 UTC 2 Report Stadium Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium Referee Audrick Nkole Zambia PenaltiesE Kane A Diene F Fall D Mendy M Ba P N diaye L Maboe S Sithebe E Brookas S Ngobeni V Mothwa N Mobbie Zimbabwe v South Africa 3 September 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Group GZimbabwe 0 0 South AfricaHarare Zimbabwe15 00 UTC 2 Report Stadium National Sports Stadium Referee Mahmoud El Banna Egypt South Africa v Ghana 6 September 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Group GSouth Africa 1 0 GhanaJohannesburg South Africa18 00 UTC 2 Hlongwane 83 Report Stadium FNB Stadium Referee Derrick Kasokota Kafuli Zambia Ethiopia v South Africa 9 October 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Group GEthiopia 1 3 South AfricaBahir Dar Ethiopia16 00 UTC 3 Kebede 67 Report Mokoena 45 1 Mvala 71 Makgopa 90 1 Stadium Bahir Dar Stadium Referee Shuhoub Abdulbasit Libya South Africa v Ethiopia 12 October 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Group GSouth Africa 1 0 EthiopiaJohannesburg South Africa18 00 UTC 2 Kebede 11 o g Report Stadium FNB Stadium Referee Georges Gatogato Burundi South Africa v Zimbabwe 11 November 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Group GSouth Africa 1 0 ZimbabweJohannesburg21 00 UTC 2 Mokoena 26 Report Stadium FNB Stadium Referee Sadok Selmi Tunisia Ghana v South Africa 14 November 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification Group GGhana 1 0 South AfricaCape Coast21 00 UTC 0 A Ayew 33 pen Report Stadium Cape Coast Sports Stadium Referee Maguette N Diaye Senegal Coaching staff EditPosition StaffTechnical Director Fran MogashoaTeam Manager Levy RamajoeHead Coach Hugo BroosAssistant Coach Helman Mkhalele Cedomir JanevskiTechnical Adviser Trott MolotoGoalkeeper Coach Andre ArendseVideo Analyst Mark DavyTeam Doctor Thulani NgwenyaMassage Therapist Renadani ManukuPhysiotherapist Nhlanhla MaphangaSource citation needed Coaching history Edit Caretaker managers are listed in italics Jeff Butler 1992 Stanley Tshabalala 1992 Ephraim Mashaba 1992 Augusto Palacios 1992 94 Clive Barker 1994 97 Jomo Sono c 1998 Philippe Troussier 1998 Trott Moloto 1998 00 Carlos Queiroz 2000 02 Ephraim Mashaba 2001 Trott Moloto 2002 Jomo Sono 2002 Ephraim Mashaba 2002 04 Jomo Sono 2003 April Phumo 2004 Stuart Baxter 2004 05 Ted Dumitru 2005 06 Pitso Mosimane 2006 Carlos Alberto Parreira 2007 08 Joel Santana 2008 09 Carlos Alberto Parreira 2009 10 Pitso Mosimane 2010 12 Steve Komphela 2012 Gordon Igesund 2012 14 Ephraim Mashaba 2014 16 Stuart Baxter 2017 19 Molefi Ntseki 2019 21 Hugo Broos 2021 Players EditCurrent squad Edit The following players were called up for the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification CAF Match date 11 November and 14 November 2021 Opposition Zimbabwe amp Ghana Caps and goals are correct as of 14 November 2021 after the match against GhanaNo Pos Player Date of birth age Caps Goals Club1 GK Ronwen Williams 1992 01 21 21 January 1992 age 29 24 0 SuperSport United1 GK Veli Mothwa 1991 02 12 12 February 1991 age 30 5 0 AmaZulu F C 1 GK Bruce Bvuma 1995 05 15 15 May 1995 age 26 3 0 Kaizer Chiefs2 DF Sifiso Hlanti 1990 05 01 1 May 1990 age 31 23 0 Kaizer Chiefs2 DF Siyanda Xulu 1991 12 30 30 December 1991 age 30 12 1 Hapoel Tel Aviv F C 2 DF Rushine De Reuck 1996 02 09 9 February 1996 age 25 11 0 Mamelodi Sundowns2 DF Nyiko Mobbie 1994 09 11 11 September 1994 age 27 10 0 Sekhukhune United F C 2 DF Mosa Lebusa 1992 10 10 10 October 1992 age 29 6 0 Mamelodi Sundowns2 DF Terrence Mashego 1998 06 28 28 June 1998 age 23 4 0 Cape Town City F C 2 DF Njabulo Ngcobo 1994 05 27 27 May 1994 age 27 3 0 Kaizer Chiefs2 DF Thibang Phete 1994 04 04 4 April 1994 age 27 3 0 Belenenses3 MF Percy Tau 1994 05 13 13 May 1994 age 27 34 13 Al Ahly3 MF Keagan Dolly 1993 01 22 22 January 1993 age 28 21 3 Kaizer Chiefs3 MF Teboho Mokoena 1997 01 24 24 January 1997 age 24 14 3 SuperSport United3 MF Mothobi Mvala 1994 06 14 14 June 1994 age 27 9 1 Mamelodi Sundowns3 MF Ethan Brooks 2001 11 22 22 November 2001 age 20 8 0 TS Galaxy F C 3 MF Yusuf Maart 1995 07 17 17 July 1995 age 26 6 1 Sekhukhune United F C 4 FW Evidence Makgopa 2000 06 05 5 June 2000 age 21 5 3 Baroka3 MF Thabani Zuke 1998 09 11 11 September 1998 age 23 2 0 Golden Arrows3 MF Mduduzi Mdantsane 1994 12 13 13 December 1994 age 27 1 0 Cape Town City F C 3 MF Njabulo Blom 1999 12 11 11 December 1999 age 22 1 0 Kaizer Chiefs3 MF Goodman Mosele 1999 11 19 19 November 1999 age 22 0 0 Orlando Pirates4 FW Victor Letsoalo 1993 04 01 1 April 1993 age 28 7 4 Royal AM F C 4 FW Bongokuhle Hlongwane 2000 06 20 20 June 2000 age 21 6 2 Minnesota United4 FW Thabiso Kutumela 1993 07 02 2 July 1993 age 28 5 2 Mamelodi Sundowns3 MF Fagrie Lakay 1997 05 31 31 May 1997 age 24 3 0 Cape Town City F C 4 FW Tshegofatso Mabaso 1996 08 01 1 August 1996 age 25 1 0 Orlando PiratesRecent call ups Edit The following players were called up to a squad in the last 12 months Caps and goals relate to the time at which the matches were played Pos Player Date of birth age Caps Goals Club Latest call upGK Sifiso Mlungwana 1997 04 27 27 April 1997 age 24 0 0 Lamontville Golden Arrows F C vs Zimbabwe 3 September 2021GK Itumeleng Khune 1987 06 20 20 June 1987 age 34 91 0 Kaizer Chiefs vs Sudan 28 March 2021DF Innocent Maela 1992 08 14 14 August 1992 age 29 12 0 Orlando Pirates vs Zimbabwe 3 September 2021DF Sibusiso Mabiliso 1999 04 14 14 April 1999 age 22 1 0 Kaizer Chiefs vs Zimbabwe 3 September 2021DF Thapelo Morena 1993 08 06 6 August 1993 age 28 14 0 Mamelodi Sundowns vs Zimbabwe 3 September 2021DF Thabani Dube 1992 11 16 16 November 1992 age 29 6 0 Kaizer Chiefs vs Zimbabwe 3 September 2021DF Thulani Hlatshwayo 1989 12 18 18 December 1989 age 32 52 4 Orlando Pirates vs Sudan 28 March 2021MF Sipho Mbule 1998 03 22 22 March 1998 age 23 3 0 SuperSport United F C vs Zimbabwe 3 September 2021MF Sphelele Mkhulise 1996 02 19 19 February 1996 age 25 6 2 Mamelodi Sundowns F C vs Zimbabwe 3 September 2021MF Siyethemba Sithebe 1993 01 06 6 January 1993 age 29 8 0 AmaZulu vs Zimbabwe 3 September 2021MF Kobamelo Kodisang 1999 08 28 28 August 1999 age 22 0 0 S C Braga B vs Zimbabwe 3 September 2021MF Sphephelo Sithole 1999 03 03 3 March 1999 age 22 0 0 Belenenses SAD vs Zimbabwe 3 September 2021MF Rivaldo Coetzee 1996 10 16 16 October 1996 age 25 24 0 Mamelodi Sundowns vs Sudan 28 March 2021MF Dean Furman 1988 06 22 22 June 1988 age 33 59 4 Altrincham vs Sudan 28 March 2021MF Andile Jali 1990 04 10 10 April 1990 age 31 48 5 Mamelodi Sundowns vs Sudan 28 March 2021MF Ben Motshwari 1991 03 21 21 March 1991 age 30 1 0 Orlando Pirates vs Sudan 28 March 2021MF Thulani Serero 1990 04 11 11 April 1990 age 31 44 2 Al Jazira Club vs Sudan 28 March 2021MF Bongani Zungu 1992 10 09 9 October 1992 age 29 32 5 Amiens vs Sudan 28 March 2021MF Themba Zwane 1989 08 03 3 August 1989 age 32 26 4 Mamelodi Sundowns vs Sudan 28 March 2021MF Ayanda Patosi 1992 10 31 31 October 1992 age 29 12 3 Foolad vs Sudan 28 March 2021FW Vincent Pule 1992 03 10 10 March 1992 age 29 2 0 Orlando Pirates vs Ethiopia 9 October 2021FW Gift Links 1998 10 02 2 October 1998 age 23 5 0 Aarhus Gymnastikforening vs Zimbabwe 3 September 2021FW Luther Singh 1997 08 05 5 August 1997 age 24 10 3 F C Copenhagen vs Zimbabwe 3 September 2021FW Kermit Erasmus 1990 07 08 8 July 1990 age 31 20 2 Mamelodi Sundowns vs Sudan 28 March 2021FW Lyle Foster 2000 09 03 3 September 2000 age 21 5 0 Westerlo vs Sudan 28 March 2021FW Ruzaigh Gamildien 1989 04 04 4 April 1989 age 32 3 0 Moroka Swallows vs Sudan 28 March 2021FW Bradley Grobler 1988 01 25 25 January 1988 age 33 12 2 SuperSport United vs Sudan 28 March 2021Past squads EditAfrica Cup of Nations 1996 African Cup of Nations 1998 African Cup of Nations 2000 African Cup of Nations 2002 African Cup of Nations 2004 African Cup of Nations 2006 Africa Cup of Nations 2008 Africa Cup of Nations 2013 Africa Cup of Nations 2015 Africa Cup of Nations 2019 Africa Cup of Nations CONCACAF Gold Cup 2005 CONCACAF Gold Cup FIFA World Cup 1998 FIFA World Cup 2002 FIFA World Cup 2010 FIFA World Cup FIFA Confederations Cup 1997 FIFA Confederations Cup 2009 FIFA Confederations CupRecords EditSee also South Africa international soccer players Aaron Mokoena became the first and to date only South African player to reach 100 caps on 31 May 2010 against Guatemala to celebrate he wore a kit with the number 100 on the back As of 14 November 2021 55 Players in bold text are still active with South Africa Most appearances Edit Rank Player Caps Goals Career1 Aaron Mokoena 107 1 1999 20102 Itumeleng Khune 91 0 2008 present3 Siphiwe Tshabalala 89 12 2006 20174 Siyabonga Nomvethe 82 16 1999 20125 Benni McCarthy 81 31 1997 20126 Shaun Bartlett 74 28 1995 20057 John Moshoeu 73 8 1992 20048 Delron Buckley 72 10 1999 2008Bernard Parker 72 23 2007 201510 Lucas Radebe 70 2 1992 2003 Teko Modise and Siphiwe Tshabalala are the only two players that have scored 10 and more goals where South Africa has never lost a game when they have scored Top goalscorers Edit Rank Player Goals Caps Ratio Career1 Benni McCarthy 31 81 0 39 1997 20122 Shaun Bartlett 28 74 0 38 1995 20053 Katlego Mphela 23 53 0 43 2005 2013Bernard Parker 23 72 0 32 2007 20155 Phil Masinga 19 58 0 33 1992 20016 Siyabonga Nomvethe 16 82 0 2 1999 20127 Sibusiso Zuma 13 67 0 19 1998 2008Percy Tau 13 34 0 38 2017 present9 Tokelo Rantie 12 41 0 29 2012 2017Siphiwe Tshabalala 12 89 0 13 2006 2017 Benni McCarthy is the first player to have scored a hat trick for South Africa List of South Africa hat tricks Edit KeyMore than a hat trick scored No Player Opponent Goals Goal Times Score Venue Competition Date Ref s 1 Benni McCarthy Namibia 4 8 11 19 21 4 1 Stade Omnisport Bobo Dioulasso Burkina Faso 1998 Africa Cup of Nations 16 February 1998 56 57 2 Victor Letsoalo Lesotho 3 5 44 57 4 0 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium Port Elizabeth South Africa 2021 COSAFA Cup 13 July 2021 58 59 Competitive record EditFIFA World Cup Edit Main article South Africa at the FIFA World Cup Although South Africa has made three appearances in the World Cup they have not made it past the first round The team s first attempt to qualify was for the 1994 World Cup The team finished second in their group behind Nigeria who went on to play at the World Cup Their first appearance was in France 1998 six years after they had been readmitted to FIFA Despite a 3 0 drubbing to France in their opening game they went on to draw against Denmark and Saudi Arabia the team finished third and thus exited the tournament Korea Japan 2002 was expected to be an opportunity for Bafana Bafana to step up to the next level but they were eliminated at the group stage despite drawing to Paraguay and beating Slovenia 1 0 for their first ever World Cup win The team finished third in their group losing out to Paraguay on goal difference The team failed to qualify for the 2006 World Cup after finishing third in their qualifying group Ghana won the group and progressed to the tournament while Congo DR finished ahead of South Africa on head to head results During the 2010 World Cup in South Africa they beat France 2 1 and drew 1 1 to Mexico but lost 0 3 to Uruguay They failed to advance to the round of 16 on goal difference for their second World Cup in a row FIFA World Cup record FIFA World Cup qualification recordYear Round Position Pld W D L GF GA Pld W D L GF GA 1930 Did not enter Did not enter 1934 1938 1950 1954 1958 1962 1966 Not admitted 60 Not admitted 1970 Banned Banned 1974 1978 1982 1986 1990 1994 Did not qualify 4 2 1 1 2 4 1998 Group stage 24th 3 0 2 1 3 6 8 6 1 1 11 3 2002 Group stage 17th 3 1 1 1 5 5 8 7 1 0 13 3 2006 Did not qualify 10 5 1 4 12 14 2010 Group stage 20th 3 1 1 1 3 5 Qualified as hosts 2014 Did not qualify 6 3 2 1 12 5 2018 8 3 1 4 11 11 2022 6 4 1 1 6 2 2026 To be determined To be determinedTotal Group stage 3 22 9 2 4 3 11 16 50 30 8 12 67 42South Africa s World Cup recordFirst Match France 3 0 South Africa 12 June 1998 Marseille France Biggest Win South Africa 1 0 Slovenia 8 June 2002 Daegu South Korea South Africa 2 1 France 22 June 2010 Bloemfontein South Africa Biggest Defeat France 3 0 South Africa 12 June 1998 Marseille France Uruguay 3 0 South Africa 16 June 2010 Pretoria South Africa Best Result 17th place at the 2002 World CupWorst Result 24th place at the 1998 World CupFIFA Confederations Cup Edit Main article South Africa at the FIFA Confederations Cup FIFA Confederations Cup recordYear Round Position Pld W D L GF GA Squad 1992 Banned 1995 Did not qualify 1997 Group Stage 8th 3 0 1 2 5 7 Squad 1999 Did not qualify 2001 2003 2005 2009 Fourth Place 4th 5 1 1 3 4 6 Squad 2013 Did not qualify 2017Total Third Place 2 10 8 1 2 5 9 13 South Africa s Confederations Cup recordFirst Match South Africa 2 2 Czech Republic 13 December 1997 Riyadh Saudi Arabia Biggest Win South Africa 2 0 New Zealand 17 June 2009 Rustenburg South Africa Biggest Defeat Spain 2 0 South Africa 20 June 2009 Bloemfontein South Africa Best Result Fourth Place at the 2009 FIFA Confederations CupWorst Result 8th place at the 1997 FIFA Confederations CupAfrica Cup of Nations Edit Main article South Africa at the Africa Cup of Nations Africa Cup of Nations recordYear Round Position Pld W D L GF GA 1957 Disqualified because of apartheid 1959 Banned 1962 1963 1965 1968 1970 1972 1974 1976 1978 1980 1982 1984 1986 1988 1990 1992 1994 Did not qualify 1996 Champions 1st 6 5 0 1 11 2 1998 Runners up 2nd 6 3 2 1 9 6 2000 Third place 3rd 6 3 2 1 8 6 2002 Quarter finals 6th 4 1 2 1 3 3 2004 Group stage 11th 3 1 1 1 3 5 2006 16th 3 0 0 3 0 5 2008 13th 3 0 2 1 3 5 2010 Did not qualify 2012 2013 Quarter finals 6th 4 1 2 1 5 3 2015 Group stage 15th 3 0 1 2 3 6 2017 Did not qualify 2019 Quarter finals 7th 5 2 0 3 3 4 2021 Did not qualify 2023 To be determined 2025Total 1 Title 10 33 43 16 12 15 48 45 Red border color indicates tournament was held on home soil South Africa s Africa Cup of Nations recordFirst Match South Africa 3 0 Cameroon 13 January 1996 Johannesburg South Africa Biggest Win South Africa 3 0 Cameroon 13 January 1996 Johannesburg South Africa South Africa 3 0 Ghana 31 January 1996 Johannesburg South Africa South Africa 4 1 Namibia 16 February 1998 Bobo Dioulasso Burkina Faso Biggest Defeat Nigeria 4 0 South Africa 31 January 2004 Monastir Tunisia Best Result Champions at the 1996 Africa Cup of NationsWorst Result 16th place at the 2006 Africa Cup of NationsAfrican Nations Championship record Edit African Nations ChampionshipAppearances 2Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA 2009 Did not qualify 2011 Quarter finals 6th 4 3 0 1 6 4 2014 Group stage 9th 3 1 1 1 5 5 2016 Did not qualify 2018 2020 To be determined 2022Total Quarter finals 2 5 7 4 1 2 11 9African Games Edit Football at the African Games has been an under 23 tournament since 1991 See also South Africa national under 23 football team African Games recordYear Result GP W D L GS GA 1965 0 0 0 0 0 0 1973 0 0 0 0 0 0 1978 0 0 0 0 0 0 1987 0 0 0 0 0 01991 present See South Africa national under 23 football teamTotal 4 4 0 0 0 0 0 0COSAFA Cup Edit Main article COSAFA Cup COSAFA Cup RecordYear Rank Pld W D L GF GA1997 0 0 0 0 0 0 01998 0 1 0 0 1 2 31999 0 2 1 1 0 3 22000 0 3 2 0 1 5 12001 0 2 1 0 1 3 12002 1 5 3 2 0 8 22003 6 1 0 0 1 0 12004 8 1 0 0 1 0 22005 3 3 2 1 0 6 22006 0 2 1 1 0 1 02007 1 4 2 2 0 3 0 2008 1 3 3 0 0 4 1 2009 4 3 1 1 1 3 2 span data, wikipedia, wiki, book,

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