Chaotic camp: Warriors travel to Malawi with players who last played competitive football seven months ago
NINE local based footballers who last tested competitive action seven months ago have been named in the Warriors’ squad to face Malawi in an international friendly on Sunday.
This comes after Government finally gave the Warriors the green light to take part in the match in Blantyre, albeit on eleventh hour.
The Government delay has also negatively weighed in on a number of foreign-based professionals failing to make it for the international friendly.
It is not clear though whether the local based players called up to the Warriors’ team were tested for Covid-19 before being selected.
This could also prove to be another headache for Warriors’ Coach Zdravko Logarušic who only has a few days to assemble the best possible squad under difficult conditions.
The Croatian is using the Malawi encounter as a dry-run ahead of the crucial back-to-back AFCON qualifiers against Algeria next month but has had to make tough decisions which have left local coaches in stitches.
FC Platinum coach Pieter de Jongh on Tuesday took a swipe at the Croatian for selecting unfit local based players for the encounter.
“Today our striker is selected for the national team without training of (sic) 7 months. Is this a joke?” de Jongh questioned on his twitter handle before quickly deleting the tweet which is sure to get him in trouble with the FC Platinum executive.
The Croat says the technical team has been working around the clock to make the best out of the situation.
“The last two days we were working very hard to try and see which players can come on time so that we can have players in the camp,” he told the state media on Wednesday.
“Some players travelled during the night, some will come in the morning and others in the afternoon and I hope Friday morning we will travel to Malawi.”
“So many players couldn’t come because of such a short notice, also because we didn’t know exactly whether the Government would give us the greenlight or not,” he said.
Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) said the Warriors’ squad would have been announced before the commencement of the international break as is the norm, but the announcement had to be delayed until the association had clearance from Government.
“The Government approved our request to travel to play Malawi on 8 October 2020,” ZIFA spokesperson Xolisani Gwesela said.
“Due to travel embargoes in place because of the covid-19 pandemic, some players from abroad whom the coach wished to assess will not make it for this match.”
“Consequently, the technical team incorporated nine locally based players into the team, with one eye on the upcoming 2021 African Nations Championship,” he added.
The team departs for Blantyre by road on the 9th of October 2020.
1. Talbert Shumba (Triangle United)
2. Nelson Chadya (Ngezi Platinum Stars)
3. Ian Nekati (Chicken Inn)
4. Qadr Amin (Ngezi Platinum Stars)
5. Alec Mudimu (Sherriff Tiraspol)
6. Takudzwa Chimwemwe (Buildcon)
7. Teenage Hadebe (Yeni Malatyaspor)
8. MacClive Phiri (Sekhukhune United)
9. Jimmy Dzingai (Nkana FC)
10. Marvelous Nakamba (Aston Villa)
11. Tanaka Chinyahara (Red Arrows)
12. Ishamel Wadi (Caps United)
13. Khama Billiat (Kaizer Chiefs)
14. Wellington Taderera (Ngezi Platinum Stars)
15. Phenias Bamusi (Caps United)
16. King Nadolo (Dynamos)
17. Charlton Mashumba (Polokwane City)
18. Stanley Ngala (FC Platinum)
Chaotic camp: Warriors fly out to Malawi with players who last played competitive football seven months ago
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