Young Warriors midfielder Archford Gutu is expected in the country on Thursday for Sunday’s Zone Six All-Africa Games final decider against South Africa at the National Sports Stadium.
Zimbabwe go into the match with a 2-0 deficit with Gutu, who is holding trials at Absa Premiership club SuperSport United, having missed the first leg owing to a suspension.
Team manager Wellington Mpandare confirmed Gutu’s impending arrival for the match that has been overshadowed by the Cosafa Women’s Championships currently taking place in the country.
“I spoke to Calvin Nyazema (Gutu’s manager) and he assured us that Gutu will be available for the match. He told us that the player will be arriving in the country on Thursday,” he said.
Mpandare, however, said the duo of Ajax Cape Town Tafadzwa Rusike England-based Trevor Mutero have been ruled out of the match while there is still doubt over the availability of Mamelodi Sundowns’ new acquisition, Simba Sithole.
“I wrote to Sundowns expressing our desire to have Simba in camp for the match, but am still to hear from them. I have spoken to the player and he has expressed his willingness to play for his country. He may also be coming on Thursday.
“Rusike is out of the match as Zifa do not have the resources to bring him into country. We are also still looking for FC Platinum’s Donald Ngoma who is still to report for duty despite being released by his club. He is currently not reachable on his mobile phone,” he said.
“Trevor has been ruled out of the tie as he is currently in the process of leaving Reading for Stoke City. He asked to be excused from the match. We still have a strong side to take on South Africa and I’m confident that we can turn the tables.”
The team still has Jomo Cosmos striker Mathew Rusike and the Dynamos duo of Timire Mamvura and Patrick Kumbula.
Liberty Chirava of Chicken Inn and the Dynamos duo of Khumbula and Mamvura were on Tuesday released from the Young Warriors’ camp to join their respective clubs who engage each other in today’s Castle Lager Premiership match.
Zimbabwe, who finished the match one man short following the expulsion of hardman Devon Chafa, lost the first leg 2-0 owing to a Bongani Ndulula brace.