Warriors thrash Mozambique

Mozambique……(0) 1
Zimbabwe………. (1) 3
Nyasha Mushekwi hit a second-half double as the Warriors overpowered Mozambique in an international soccer friendly match played at Maxaquene Stadium here Wednesday.

The Mamelodi Sundowns hitman was on target in the 59th and 87th minutes, adding to a half-time opener from Kaizer Chiefs striker Knowledge Musona.

The hosts grabbed their consolation goal through substitute Isac Carvalho in the second half overtime.

The match was played before a virtually empty stadium where the army band, who played the national anthems of the two teams, the police and the Red Cross officials were the major spectators on a chilly afternoon characterised by light showers.

One could feel sorry for the 12 ballboys scattered around the field as they braved the cold weather. Warriors acting head coach Madinda Ndlovu, thrust in charge for yesterday’s game only, was impressed with the overall performance of the players.

He handed Platinum Stars striker Terrence Mandaza his first senior cap after coming on in the 66th minute in place of Esrom Nyandoro.

“The performance was good. It’s what any coach would expect from a crop of experienced and young players. We controlled play in the first quarter using a 4-4-2 formation and then shifted to 3-5-2 as we wanted to add more men in attack and get goals,” said Ndlovu.

After a rather quiet 40 minutes where there were two attacks from Zimbabwe by Tafadzwa Rusike and Musona, the first half finished on a high note as the visitors took the lead.

Mozambique got an offside decision on the byline and goalkeeper Sozinho Tafula played a short one to defender Joao Aguir.

The defender attempted to return the ball to the keeper before Tafula got back to his goal.

Musona reacted faster to the backpass and toe-poked the ball into the nets. Fourteen minutes after the breather, Mushekwi made it 2-0 for the Warriors, heading home a corner kick from Esron Nyandoro.

It was 3-0 three minutes before the end when substitute Benjamin Marere started a move on the right flank. He found Tinashe Nengomasha, who played a one-two with Musona.

The Chiefs striker laid a perfect ball for the on-rushing Mushekwi to slam the ball home past substitute goalkeeper Rodrigues Machaja.

Mozambique pulled one back when Carvalho was brought down in the box by Daniel Vheremu and Swaziland referee Nhleko Simanga pointed to the spot. Carvalho sent Tapuwa Kapini the wrong side, two minutes into added time.

Zimbabwe team

T Kapini, E Nyandoro (T Mandaza 66th min), T Sweswe, G Mapemba, M Mwanjali, T Nengomasha, T Rusike (B Marere 54th min), N Mushekwi, Z Ngodzo, K Musona, O Machapa (D Vheremu 86th min)

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