HomeSportSoccerAfcon dream all but gone

Afcon dream all but gone

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In his first interview with NewsDay in June when the paper was just weeks old, Zifa president Cuthbert Dube said his biggest dreamt was to see the Warriors qualify for the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations soccer finals in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea.

Good dream indeed. And when the Warriors played out a 1-1 draw against Liberia in the opening qualifier in Monrovia in September, Dube was living the dream, believing that the next home match against the Cape Verde Islands would give him three points.

That would have taken the Warriors to the top of the log.

But Dube killed his own dream, when first he turned down the recommendation of the technical committee to appoint Tom Saintfiet as the coach in favour of Norman Mapeza.

That was the start of the confusion, propagated by the president himself, which left the board divided and when Saintfiet was deported for working without a work permit, Mapeza became the main man to take over the coaching duties.

But behind all that, the board stood resolute on their recommendation, but by Friday it was clear Mapeza would be in charge of Sunday’s game.

And yes he was and the game ended 0-0, putting the Warriors in third position in the race and heaping more pressure on Dube.

Mapeza barked instructions from the touchline for 94 minutes of the match while his co-coach Madinda Ndlovu sat on the bench. He only stood up to applaud a good move and welcome substitutes to the bench.

And when the match ended, Ndlovu did not go to shake hands with his co-coach because he was having interviews with the media.

Off course, they did that latter in the dressing room. In all this mess, Dube decided to stay away. It does not matter who was in charge-one would have observed the banners emblazoned Mapeza-but the 0-0 result is a direct result of the confusion and the politics being played by Dube in managing (is it mismanaging?), the game of football.

Captain Benjani Mwaruwari’s call to unite came rather late, clearly there was no unity in that camp, instead there was “technical insolvency” from the man in charge.

For how do you explain the substitution of Knowledge Musona for Vusa Nyoni-does anyone know what position Nyoni plays at Germinal Beerschot in Belgium?

For now, the dream is all but gone and Dube should shoulder the blame, entirely.

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