SportView:Resurrect Warriors from the ashes

THIS paper has been a constant critic of Zimbabwe national football coach Sunday Chidzambwa.

Not known to keep his opinion to himself, Chidzambwa has, as expected, dismissed our censure of him as a lot of bull.

But we do have our defence which is well-justified and for that reason we make no apology.
But like him or not, you have to admit that the bloke is in a tight spot at the moment.
Word has it that he is owed money by the governing body, Zifa, and that he is currently working on a “casual” basis.

Little wonder last week he was reported to have been spotted in Johannesburg in the company of officials from South African PSL club, Free State Stars.

The club later confirmed to have interviewed Chidzambwa, who they have earmarked to fill the coaching vacancy at Goble Park.

That Chidzambwa is a good coach is undoubted, certainly at the level of the South African Premiership. Perhaps he could even succeed at a bigger club in Mzansi, looking at his impressive record with Dynamos. We wish him well in his endavour to land a good contract down south, and as the Free State folk would say, alle sukses, boet!

Chidzambwa could well stay on with the Warriors, but whatever outcome, whether he goes or someone else takes over, it must be for one chief goal: the resurrection of the Warriors.

The Warriors can barely sink any lower, and focus must be kept to a maximum to ensure that a coach of quality should take on what is a very unappealing task, to rescue the Warriors from the ashes of the last three years.

The success of the national team is a yardstick by which football associations (FAs) across the world are measured.

Hence, leaving office with the team ranked 109 by Fifa, and having failed to qualify for the last two African Nations Cup finals, is a pathetic record by the Wellington Nyatanga-led board which was recently replaced.

The national team is the public display of the FA’s endeavours; and in some instances, a symbol and pride of the whole nation.

Therefore, the national side must exhibit a high level of professionalism throughout, from camping to training methods, from food nutrition to kitting. How the Warriors turned up for the international friendly against Bafana Bafana in January dressed in a dreadful, counterfeit Adidas kit is something somebody at Zifa should have been asked to explain in a normal situation.

The new Zifa board must rebuild a Warriors brand we can be proud to be associated with. It must assemble a Warriors team with identity, a team we know and can relate to.

My point here is that at present, all we know for sure is that Benjani Mwaruwari is the Warriors captain.
Who between Onismor Bhasera and Zhaimu Jambo is the Warriors left-back? Oh, wait a minute; it could be Cephas Chimedza for that matter, or even Asani Nhongo.

Who is the first-choice Warriors holding midfielder? Is it Tinashe Nengomasha, Esrom Nyandoro or Justice Majabvi?

The task for Zifa is to ensure that the coach has the best possible Zimbabwe XI at his disposal to go to battle with. In fact, it is the coach’s mandate to demand not just the player resources, but assurance for their welfare and essential incentives which provide that extra push to perform for their country.

What it means, fundamentally, is that Zifa should be able to bring down Bhasera from the UK, Majabvi from Austria, Noel Kaseke from Cyprus, Edward Sadomba from Sudan and if necessary, Mkhokheli Dube from the US for national duty.

You cannot guarantee success by cutting corners, and it has to be said that the previous Zifa leadership was guilty of that.
Having said that though, as this paper has always done, we will give the new dispensation its fair chance, but reserve the right to ask the tough questions should its failure become apparent.
enockm@zimind.co.zw

 

Enoch Muchinjo

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