ZIFA appeals for the release of players

By Lawrence Trusida

THE Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) is making frantic efforts to ensure the availability of national team players based in England for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against South Africa and Ethiopia. 

The Warriors will host South Africa at the National Sports Stadium on September 3, before taking on Ethiopia four days later in Addis Ababa. 

The Warriors technical department this week announced a provisional squad that includes seven players based in the United Kingdom, popularly referred to as the British brigade. 

But Covid-19 regulations in that country are most likely set to see Warriors coach Zdravko Logarusic having to do without midfielder Marvelous Nakamba, defenders Tendayi Darikwa, Jordan Zemura and Brendan Galloway as well as strikers David Moyo, Admiral Muskwe and Macauley Bonne.

The Zimbabwe Football Association -ZIFA is, however, pulling all stops to try and secure the players.

“We have tried to engage the British government but to no avail, we are a Red listed country in terms of covid, players will be subjected to a 10-day quarantine when they return to their bases so the clubs are not releasing the players but we are still engaging them to see if there can be a workaround.”

There is, however, good news with the France-based duo of Tino Kadewere and Marshall Munetsi confirming their availability as of this Friday morning.

Meanwhile, newly appointed Warriors’ assistant coach Benjani Mwaruwari is expected in the country this Saturday to take up his new position.