THE INVINCIBLES...Warriors out to make history

HARARE - With Zimbabwe having already qualified for 2017 African Cup of Nations finals to be held in Gabon next year, Warriors skipper Willard Katsande revealed they now want to finish the campaign unbeaten.

The Warriors travel to Conakry to face Guinea this Sunday in their final Group L qualifier and if they avoid defeat they will go into the history books.

This generation will be the first Zimbabwe side to qualify for an Afcon tournament without experiencing defeat in the qualifiers.

Even the class off 2004 that made history by become the first Warriors side to qualify for the tournament in Tunisia had a blip on their record.

Sunday Chidzambwa’s side lost to Seychelles 2-1 in Victoria during their qualification campaign.

At the moment, the Warriors are unbeaten in five matches and Katsande wants his side to end on a high.

“Obviously we have two things in mind going into this match. We need to finish the campaign on a high. Avoiding defeat is history to us so yes, we are taking this match seriously,” Katsande told Daily News.

“Secondly, due to circumstances we faced in this campaign, we also need to use this game as part of preparations for Africa Cup Nations finals in Gabon in January.

“So we are more than serious to approach it with respect and focus because we also need to protect our pride as a country.

“We cannot waste resources to go there and just fulfil the fixture. We need to give everything and see how far we have come as a group. We should also use the opportunity to play without pressure and see how we can perform.

“We want to finish qualifying on a high note and prove a point in our region. For us, it’s the start of preparations for the Afcon and therefore we have to continue to raise the bar. We have had such amazing support from our fans, and we owe it to them to put our best foot forward.”

Katsande said he is confident of picking maximum points away from home. The two teams settled for 1-1 draw in the reverse fixture earlier this year at Rufaro Stadium.

“They are playing at home so we will need to contain them and frustrate them by maybe getting an early goal,” Katsande said.

“I am very confident of maximum points because we will be playing at easy but at the same time so competitive.

“We will definitely give our best and come up with maximum points there. We have an exciting group of players who are willing to give their best.”

Warriors striker Cuthbert Malajila also concurred with his captain’s views.

“I think for us it’s important because we want to finish on a high note. We have lost a game and we want to continue with that same attitude,” said Malajila.

“We do not have any pressure going into this one because we have already qualified so every player will be expressing themselves freely. We have been together for some time now and this is another opportunity for us to gauge our progress.”

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