Muskwe offered new contract

Eddie Chikamhi Senior Sports Reporter
DESPITE failing to make the cut in Zimbabwe’s final squad for the 2019 AFCON tournament, young forward Admiral Muskwe has been given a vote of confidence by Leicester City after he was offered a new contract. He will remain part of the former English Premiership champions’ development side.

The 20-year-old forward was named among the players that were offered new contracts in a clean-up conducted by the club’s development structures. Muskwe’s contract was set to run out next month.

But he is set to stay longer at the club after he was named as one of the 10 players offered new deals recently by the Foxes when they announced their list, which also featured 13 players to be released.

Despite enduring a difficult campaign during the 2018-2019 season, because of a long-term injury, the Young Foxes technical team led by Steve Beaglehole still saw value and decided to keep the Zimbabwean in their ranks.

He made 11 appearances for the Under-23s in the Premier League 2 and scored once.

“He’s still just 20 years of age and looks to have a very promising future ahead of him,” read British sports website, Leicester Mercury.

The striker had been in camp with the Zimbabwe squad preparing for the Africa Cup of Nations to be held in Egypt, starting next week.

But, after featuring in one game during the preparatory COSAFA Cup in South Africa last week, he could not make the final list in coach Sunday Chidzambwa’s selection.

However, according to reports from Leicester, Muskwe has not yet signed his new deal.

He was offered the opportunity along with Leicester City development squad player-of-the-season Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall. Romanian international defender Alex Pascanu, left-back Calvin Ughelumba, and attacking midfielders Layton Ndukwu, Tyrese Shade and Conor Tee, have also signed new contracts.

Defender Ed Elewa-Ikpakwu and goalkeeper Jakub Stolarczyk have been given the opportunity to sign professional contracts, but are yet to agree.

Faiq Bolkiah, nephew of the Sultan of Brunei and the so-called “world’s richest footballer’, has also been offered an extension.

Leicester City’s Development Squad is known as one of the best Under-23s sides in England, producing players such as Ben Chilwell, Hamza Choudhury and Harvey Barnes for the club’s first team.

Muskwe was snapped up by Leicester City when he was just eight years old and has over the years risen through the ranks to become one of the most promising strikers in the England Premier League 2.

The Zimbabwean inked his first professional contract with the club three years ago and was also rewarded with a trip to Austria to a pre-season tour with the Leicester City first team. He is still to make his breakthrough into the senior team, though.

Muskwe represented the England national team at Under-17 level after making his debut for the Three Lions in the 2014 Under-17’s Nordic Tournament and scored two goals in four appearances in the tournament.

In November 2017 Muskwe made his senior international debut, appearing as a second-half substitute for Zimbabwe in a 1-0 defeat to Lesotho in a friendly match.

Warriors coach Chidzambwa indicated he could be one of the players for the future.