9 November 2016
. . . but what has changed?
THE Warriors international friendly against Tanzania is more than just a preparation for AFCON for cash strapped Zifa, H-Metro can reveal.
For that reason the association desperately needed coach Kalisto Pasuwa to select the best possible team to face Tanzania to attract a full house at the National Sports Stadium and maximise on gate takings.
Although coach Pasuwa had indicated that Khama Billiat will be rested owing to fatigue, the Mamelodi Sundowns poster boy has been named in the 23-member squad to face Tanzania.
Khama, skipper Willard Katsande, talisman Knowledge Musona, Vitesse star Marvelous Nakamba, Dalian Yifang’s Nyasha Mushekwi and Sparta Prague Costa Nhamoinesu, who is ruled out through injury, are some of the big crowd pullers.
Team manager Sharif Musa however indicated that the decision to change the earlier position and include Khama is purely to do with making sure a strong bond is created ahead of AFCON.
“We felt that he should come because now this is a game in preparation for AFCON with possible AFCON selected players,” said Musa.
However, other sources said it is more than just that.
“The inclusion of more of the foreign players, especially those players with big names, ensures that the association gets enough income from gate takings to pay for expenses.
“The team of local-based players that played Zambia did not generate much and Zifa cannot afford that.
They may not have pressured the coach to include Khama but the technical team is also aware of Zifa’s financial position,” said an insider.
Last week Zifa president had explained why it was easier to organise the men’s national team matches with foreign-based players included.
“If I play at the National Sports Stadium and I owe these guys like always. I owe them no less than US$100 000. If that stadium is filled to capacity like always, I (balance the books).
“If I’m carrying an expenditure of US$40 000 and if there is no corresponding income, there is a problem. That is when I start to create more debts for Zifa, something that I stopped when I came in,” Chiyangwa said, then.
He was explaining why it is easier to organise matches for the Warriors ahead of the Mighty Warriors.
With Sparta Prague star Costa Nhamoinesu, Maritzburg due of Blessing Moyo and Evans Rusike injured, according to Zifa, Pasuwa has been forced to decorate the team more.
It remains a fact that Khama could be suffering from fatigue after playing many matches for Sundowns in CAF Champions league, CAF Confederation Cup, back in the CAF Champions league and several domestic matches this year.
On Tuesday what changed was the inclusion of the Sundowns player Billiat into the team to face Tanzania.
And to watch Khama and company on Sunday fans will pay US$3 for rest of the ground, bay 15 to 18 will cost US$5 while VIP will be US$10.
In the squad, former Highlanders star Bruce Kangwa, now in Tanzania, also bounced back.
Golden Arrows midfielder Kuda Mahachi, who missed the last qualifier against Guinea, was also named in the squad.
Other foreign-based players in the team include AS Vita star Oscar Machapa, Supersport man Onismo Bhasera, Golden Arrows hardman Danny Phiri, Helsingborgs IF winger Mathew Rusike, Bidvest Wits striker Cuthbert Malajila, Orlando Pirates gunman Tendai Ndoro and Djurgårdens IF rising star Tino Kadewere.
Donovan Bernard (How Mine)
Tatenda Mkuruva (Dynamos)
Nelson Chadya (Ngezi Platinum)
Onismor Bhasera (Supersport United)
Hardlife Zvirekwi (Caps United)
Bruce Kangwa (Azam FC)
Lawrence Mhlanga (Chicken Inn)
Teenage Hadebe (Chicken Inn)
Tendai Ndlovu (Highlanders)
Oscar Machapa (AS Vita Club)
Willard Katsande (Kaizer Chiefs)
Marvelous Nakamba (Vitesse Arnhem)
Marshall Mudehwe (FC Platinum)
Raphael Kutinyu (Chicken Inn)
Danny Phiri (Golden Arrows)
Kudakwashe Mahachi (Golden Arrows)
Khama Billiat (Mamelodi Sundowns)
Knowledge Musona (KV Oostende)
Mathew Rusike (Helsingborgs IF)
Tendai Ndoro (Orlando Pirates)
Cuthbert Malajila (Bidvest Wits)
Philana Kadewere (Djurgardens IF)
Nyasha Mushekwi (Dalian Yifang)