SUNDAY Chidzambwa is set to continue his role as Zimbabwe Warriors interim coach for the team’s next assignments.
BY HENRY MHARA
Zimbabwe play two international friendlies in November during the Fifa international break, with the Warriors expected to travel to Maseru on November 8 to face Lesotho, before connecting to Windhoek to play Namibia three days later.
The team is also set to play in the Council of East and Central African Football Associations (Cecafa) Challenge Cup set for Kenya end of November.
The tournament, where Zimbabwe will feature as a guest nation, will run from November 25 to December 9.
There is no substantive coach for the team at the moment after Norman Mapeza took charge of the Warriors squad on an interim basis for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) Group G qualifier against Liberia in June, which they won 3-0.
Chidzambwa then took over for the Cosafa Cup in South Africa the following month, where Zimbabwe won the tournament.
Zifa extended his mandate as a reward for winning the regional tournament when his interim tenure was extended for the team’s African Championship Nations qualifiers, where the Warriors fell horribly short, falling to Namibia in the first round.
Zifa yesterday told NewsDaySport that they would announce the Warriors coach to take charge of the three assignments this week.
“We will advise by the end of this week,” Zifa spokesperson, Xolisani Gwesela said.
However, a source yesterday confided that the Zifa leadership has once again picked Chidzambwa for the team’s next matches.
“Sunday will continue with his role and they have already contacted him. Negotiations have started and I don’t think he will turn down the offer. They want to retain the technical team that won the Cosafa tournament and that shouldn’t be a problem because they have worked well,” the source said.
The ZPC Kariba gaffer, who is arguably the most successful coach the country has produced, was deputised by Dynamos coach, Lloyd Mutasa and former Highlanders coach, Bongani Mafu, when he led the Warriors to a history making fifth Cosafa title.
When extending Chidzambwa’s tenure after the Cosafa tournament, Zifa president, Philip Chiyangwa said he wanted continuity in the team and would not want to disturb the momentum.
Chiyangwa has also previously said he wants Mapeza to see out the Afcon campaign.
It’s not yet clear whether Zifa would call the Warriors’ foreign based players for the November matches against Lesotho and Namibia, games that acts as preparations for the 2019 Afcon qualifiers, which are set to resume in March next year.
“We will be guided by the coach. We will give the list of the players once the coach avails,” Gwesela said.
The Warriors are away to Congo in March for next Afcon Group G qualifier, where another win would boost their chances of qualifying for the tournament.
Zimbabwe lead the group with three points, the same tally as favourites Democratic Republic of Congo, who won their opening match 3-1, against Congo who, together with Liberia, have zero points.
Two top teams from the group will qualify for the Afcon finals to be staged in Cameroon.