The government will fund this year’s Zifa Cup as the troubled football body’s biggest knockout competition attempts to get back to its feet.
Report by Kevin Mapasure
Zifa announced earlier this year that the competition which involves the biggest number of teams with lower division teams also taking a shot, will be back on the calendar this term without elaborating who would finance it.
It has emerged that it is government, which also sponsored the tournament before under the name Zifa Unity Cup, which will bankroll it on its return in an attempt to help the broke football mother body market the sport so that the corporate world can take over next year.
Zifa chief executive officer Jonathan Mashingaidze confirmed that arrangements are already in place for the return of the competition which has struggled for sponsors in recent years, but he however declined to give details.
But they have since announced that they will plough US$40 000 into each of the four regions which will be used for the preliminary rounds with four teams emerging from each of the four regions for the first round where they go into the hat with the Castle Lager Premier League teams.
The first round will comprise 32 teams and Zifa are hoping that if successfully run this year the competition will be able to attract corporate sponsorship next year.
The Mbada Diamonds Cup has been the largest knockout competition but it only involves top flight teams.