Daiton University of America will hold trials for junior soccer players in a talent search that will see successful players getting scholarships to study and play in America.
Local football academy BN Academy will conduct the trials on behalf of the university.
The trials start on Friday at Belgravia Sports Club and are open to students who have already sat for their “O” Level exams.
University of Daiton coach Kiki Lara will be in the country on Sunday to assess the players with a view of taking students who will commence studies in America at the beginning of the year.
BN Academy boss Bhekimpilo Nyoni said: “We want to groom young players. This is a good opportunity for them to develop their game. We will open windows for them whenever we can and this is one such opening.”
The trials will start on Sunday but the local academy will hold pre-trials sessions to prepare the players today and tomorrow.
The players will get funding of between $18 000 and $30 000 to cover their studies and upkeep while they are in America.
The aim at the end of their studies is to get the players into professional leagues in that country.
Five students have already benefited from the programme which started in 2008 and two of them are in their final year at the university after which they will be offered to clubs.
Nyoni said that they have been monitoring the progress of the players in America whom he said have all been playing in first teams.
Nyoni said Lara would take video footages of the players with him to America, which he will share with other universities so that they can make a follow-up on any of the players.
Lara will arrive in the country from Ghana where he is on a similar mission.
Some of the players who have already benefited from the initiative include Regis Mawire at Central Arkansas University, Regis Soko at Brookes High School, Simon Marange, Tatenda Chimhanda and Tapiwa Machingauta at Bradley University.