'Tsano' upbeat about Zim soccer

HARARE - Legendary coach Cosmas “Tsano” Zulu believes with more corporates coming on board to help in grassroots football, the future of Zimbabwe’s sports will remain very bright.

Zulu is currently part of a four-man technical team that is part of the Shield-Chelsea Talent Search programme.

Unilever through their brand Shield partnered with the Stamford Bridge club to embark on a talent identification project in Africa that will see 11 players from the continent take on the Chelsea Legends in an exhibition match.

If any of the African players impress the Chelsea scouts, they can be signed by the English Premier League club.

Zulu, who specialises in goalkeeper coaching, is working together with former Warriors and Dynamos coach Kallisto Pasuwa, former Warriors and CAPS United forward Alois Bunjira and former Dynamos midfielder Naison Muchekela.

The quartet first held trials in Bulawayo last month before descending on Harare last weekend at Alexandra Sports Club.

A total of 20 players from the Harare trials were selected and they will join the other 15 spotted in Bulawayo for a boot camp.

One lucky player from this group will then be selected to represent Zimbabwe in the Africa squad that will take on the Chelsea Legends.

“Building the future for the youths is the most important thing that you can do for yourself. It can be in your family or in any organisation.

“The youths are the future of any organisation so this year the project by Chelsea and Unilever has shown me that there’s a lot of talent at grassroots,” Zulu told the Daily News.

“I think if we can get four or five of the corporate world going into such kind of projects we will actually identify a lot of talent which people never thought was there. So for me, I’m so happy to be involved in this project, it has shown me that Zimbabwe has got a lot of talent.”

Zulu learned his trade from the knowledgeable head of former Scotland goalkeeper Bobby Clarke, who represented his country at the 1978 World Cup.

The former AmaZulu and Highlanders coach is happy to share this knowledge with the upcoming generation.

“He (Clarke) came and taught me about goalkeeping, hence you have seen what I was doing. I’m doing this because I want to pass my knowledge to the young coaches,” Zulu said.

“The young coaches are the future of football in this country and I don’t want to go to my grave with all this knowledge, I want to share it with the young coaches.

“It’s up to individuals as much as I interact with them and there are certain times I find they need my experience but in life there are situations where you are a student.

“There are situations where you are a teacher but you can’t be a teacher all the time. I’m also learning a couple of things from the young coaches.”

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