Mhofu picks his men

HARARE - Sunday Chidzambwa says he is humbled to be back in the Warriors fold after he was named the team’s interim coach for the forthcoming Cosafa Castle Senior Challenge Cup which starts next week.

Chidzambwa, who led Zimbabwe to their last Cosafa Cup glory on home soil in 2009, will be assisted by Dynamos coach Lloyd Mutasa while former Highlanders gaffer Bongani Mafu will be the second assistant coach.

The ZPC Kariba coach arrived in the capital yesterday as the team is scheduled to start preparations for the tournament to be held in South Africa today.

“I was only given the directive to select only two players from each club because the league has to go on,” Chidzambwa told the Daily News.

“So we didn’t have that luxury of picking all the best that we would have wanted but at the same time, I think we have done what we feel is good for a tournament.

“It’s an honour really to be leading the national team again. I feel humbled and I can only thank the football fraternity from Zimbabwe for their support. We can only go there and try to do our best.”

In announcing his squad, Chidzambwa blended experience and some youngsters.

South Africa-based duo of goalkeeper George Chigova and defender Eric Chipeta, who were in the starting XI during last week’s 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Liberia, are the big names in the squad.

They are also joined by Golden Arrows striker Knox Mtizwa and Kaizer Chiefs forward Michelle Katsvairo as the other foreign-based players in the team.

There were also places for Harare City defender Jimmy Tigere, who has had an outstanding season so far.

Shabanie Mine pair of Collins Dhuwa and Nyasha Mpofu also forced their way into the team as well as Black Rhinos pair of James Mukombwe and Bruce Homora.

Meanwhile, Zifa yesterday clarified that following his appointment to lead the Warriors for the Cosafa tournament, Chidzambwa together with Moses Chunga, who was also appointed as the Under-17 national team coach, will no longer sit in the High Performance Committee (HPC).

“We don’t want issues of conflict of interest and their replacements will be announced in due course. We took into consideration all those issues hence arriving at our decision,” Zifa spokesperson Xolisani Gwesela told the Daily News yesterday. 

Gwesela said the arrangement not to have a substantive Warriors coach will not hamper the team’s development.

“We indicated that Norman Mapeza will remain in charge of the senior national and will take charge of the Afcon qualifiers .

“You find it’s not even affecting the continuity of the team because in this case these coaches will obviously liaise when picking players for duty.

“Mapeza can still suggest to Chidzambwa if there are any local players that he feels they need to call up for Cosafa to prepare them for Afcon. 

“We only decided to appoint Chidzambwa, albeit on a caretaker basis to reduce the workload on Mapeza. It is also important to note that these coaches who are coming to coach the national team will be offered contracts but unfortunately, I can’t disclose the contents as it is confidential.

“Even the players, they are also signing contracts . . . we want to move away from situations where players boycott matches demanding exorbitant allowances.

“So we have since put measures that all the technical staff and players sign contracts before they start their duties with the team.”

Zim Cosafa Cup squad:

Goalkeepers: George Chigova (Polokwane City), Takabva Mawaya (Ngezi Platinum Stars), Talbert Mutombeni (Chapungu)

Defenders: Eric Chipeta (Ajax Cape Town), Ocean Mushure (Dynamos), Honest Moyo (Highlanders), Bruce Homora (Black Rhinos), Jimmy Tigere (Harare City), Jameson Mukombwe (Black Rhinos), Nyasha Mpofu (Shabanie Mine)

Midfielders: Liberty Chakoroma (Ngezi Platinum Stars), Gerald Takwara (FC Platinum) Ovidy Karuru (Amazulu), Leeroy Mavunga (Yadah Stars), Talent Chawapiwa (FC Platinum), Michelle Katsvairo (Kaizer Chiefs), Innocent Mucheneka (Chicken Inn), Collins Dhuwa (Shabanie Mine)

Strikers: Knox Mtizwa (Lamontville Golden Arrows), Prince Dube (Highlanders), Bukhosi Sibanda (Bantu Rovers), Blessing Majarira (Herrentals), Raphael Manuvire (ZPC Kariba).

Comments (1)

Mhofu Why are you leaving the wining team assembled by Mapeza. Is there also a limit on the Foreign based (Africa). I am sure you could have assembled a better team than this. Anyway All the best

mutema - 21 June 2017

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