warriors2 zim.jpgLocal-based coaches have expressed concern with the Warriors’ preparations that appear to be behind schedule for the Africa Cup of Nations qualifier match against Mali on June 5 at the National Sports Stadium.


Some fans and analysts have expressed concern with the Zimbabwe Football Association for lack of and failure to plan for the match against Mali.

The association, which is said to be broke and faces a number of litigation cases filed by two former coaches Sunday “Mhofu” Chidzambwa and Belgian Tom Saintfiet, appears to have taken a casual and laid back approach towards the match.

The players called up for national duty by coach Norman Mapeza are only getting into camp on Sunday 29th of May and have just five days to prepare before they play a must-win game against Mali at home.

Other teams in the group include Cape Verde and Liberia.

Local coaches said the association should have taken advantage of the fact that most leagues have just ended their season and most players are available for a longer camping period.

The coaches said home advantage and the 12th man, the supporters, could play a crucial part in the Warriors’ hopes for a good result.

Zimbabwe Warriors hopes of qualifying for the Guinea and Gabon AFCON are fading slowly and slipping out of their hands.

The defeat to Mali left them third in the table, 5 points behind surprise table leaders Cape Verde who comfortably beat Liberia 4-2 at home.

With only the top team qualifying from Group 1, Zimbabwe will need to win all their remaining matches to have any chance of qualifying for the continental tournament scheduled for next year.

To win their remaining matches they will have to improve in all areas from their last outing against Mali. They offered little going forward and their defence was left exposed on numerous occasions.

New inclusions this time include SA based top strikers Knowledge Musona, Nyasha Mushekwi, Khama Billiat, midfielders Esrom Nyandoro, France-based Ovidy Karuru and defenders Zhaimu Jambo, Cyprus-based Noel Kaseke. Also vying for position upfront is local Simba Sithole who is currently on form.

The Warriors host Mali on June 5th and Liberia in the first week of September before finishing off the qualifying campaign with a tough trip to Cape Verde.