Zim trio leaves for Germany

HARARE – The Zimbabwe junior football representatives to participate in the 10-day Puma Sport trials in Germany left the country on Monday evening.

The trio that includes the Maningi Soccer Academy pair of Mordecai Chigaba (16) and Sean Muneka (18) as well as Zimbabwe Under-20 and FC Platinum player Tatenda Dzumbunu (19) left the country aboard an Emirates flight.

Both Chigaba and Muneka have been capped by the Zimbabwe Under-17 team.

The three are beneficiaries of the first visit by ex-West Bromwich Albion coach Paul Andres Gibbons, who identified the players during a two-week scouting mission with the Glen View-based academy in February.

The English Premiership side chief scout also travelled to Hwange during the intensive talent identification mission.

Chigaba, who is inspired by Warriors’ talisman Knowledge Musona and Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid, is ecstatic at getting the opportunity.

“This is an opportunity of a life-time for me, not many people of my age have been accorded a chance of this magnitude and I would want to pay back their faith by playing well and possibly get a good placement with one of the Bundesliga giants,” Chigaba told the Daily News before leaving for Germany.

“My life revolves around football, my coaches speak of the potential in me quite often and I believe if I put extra effort and apply all that I have learnt at practice over the years, I will not disappoint at the trials.

“I wish the same good luck to my fellow mates that I’m travelling with. God willing, we will all be smiling at the end of these trials.”

The trials will be conducted in Frankfurt and Bremen among other towns with the players set to play 10 games under the Puma team against other youngsters from Ghana, Brazil, Nigeria and Spain.

Maningi Academy director Gladyman Dimbiri, who is based in the UK, will be in Germany to support the players.

“They have all played for the Young Warriors, a reflection of just how good the boys are and with that I’m positive that they will outshine their opponents,” Dimbiri told the Daily News from his UK base.

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