Preps are key — Katsande

HARARE - Warriors captain Willard Katsande has urged the Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) to organise more friendly internationals for the side to do well at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon).

Katsande was speaking after the Warriors’ 1-0 defeat to Guinea at the Stade 28 Septembre during their final Group L match on Sunday.

Zimbabwe, who had already qualified for the finals to be held in Gabon next January, almost failed to travel to Conakry for the match after Zifa had failed to secure flights in time for the encounter.

The team only managed to fly out for the match on Saturday evening aboard a chartered Air Zimbabwe plane following the intervention of NetOne and the government.   

“We are not in the 2018 World Cup qualifiers, so we need our association to line up a couple of friendly matches so that we keep the rhythm and keep on bonding as players,” Katsande said.

“Obviously, at our clubs we will be having game time but at the same time we need to assess ourselves as the national team to see how we are progressing as a football country against other teams. Friendly matches are the only way that can help us improve.”

Despite the chaotic travelling arrangements, the Kaizer Chiefs midfield enforcer praised his charges for holding their own against the Syli Nationale.

“I think our performance was not bad. You could see it was a game of two halves. In the first half, they were on top but we re-grouped after the break and with some bit of luck and precision we could have scored one or two,” Katsande said.

“Had we, maybe, managed to get a goal it could have been a different ball game altogether.

“But yeah, such is the nature of the game; we need to pick out positives from this match. I think it was a good test because we will obviously face some West African countries at Afcon.

“Travelling of course played a part but we are professionals we can adjust to any situation or conditions.

“This is African football and you should be prepared for any situation.”      

Warriors coach Kalisto Pasuwa also hammered home the need for good preparations before the Afcon finals in Gabon.

“I think we have been having problems internally but the boys showed a lot of character in understanding the situation which is there in our country,” Pasuwa said.

“I think where we are going now, we need to do more in terms of preparations.

“We need adequate preparations in order to do well in Gabon. At this level, competition will be stiff and if we can have some friendly matches it will make us better.

“There are areas that we need to rectify. If you can see the way we played in the second half it was very encouraging. With more practice, I am sure we can do better.”

Comments (1)

pasuwa should just stop nyaya ye favouratism when picking up players for national team

bvaru bvaru - 7 September 2016

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