Solve the Warriors issue now


This week the Federation of International Football Associations (Fifa) announced the slip of the senior mens soccer team on the Coca-Cola rankings and we think this should be a cause for concern.

The Warriors, who were regarded as 99th best team in the world, suddenly found themselves going down by seven rungs following the defeat to inferior Burundi in the 2013 African Cup of Nations preliminary round first leg qualifier match in Bujumbura.

They lost 2-1 and now hope that they overturn the result when the Swallows of Burundi come to our shores for the second leg in June.

Burundis dominance of the Warriors was largely expected due to the fact that most key players who participated in the previous campaign were banned for this match including their coach Norman Mapeza.

It was left to interim coach Rahman Gumbo who had to select his squad from a shallow pool after 99 players were suspended by the Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) over Asiagate.

We have said it before and we will repeat it: Zifa were wrong to suspend those players and coaches on the eve of the match against Burundi. We think they should have sidelined the players just after the match which could have allowed continuity. After all, they had all the time between February and June to solve this issue.

Now it is the time!
The team that went to Burundi was fair, but there was evidence of tiring from players who were not match-fit. Some of the new faces had a daunting task fitting into the new bill. Even coach Gumbo testified to this.

It was haphazard. The current Zifa board procrastinates on problems and seem to take their time in the world when it comes to national projects. As it stands, we dont know which coach will be in charge in the second leg against Burundi.

We urge Zifa to put Asiagate to rest so that the nation gets a clearer picture, at least with regard to the players and coaches. This issue has dragged for a long time.

Cases surrounding suspended key national team players like Ovidy Karuru, Khama Billiat and Lincoln Zvasiya must be expedited so that they are once again conscripted into the team once they are cleared.

The same goes for Mapeza. If he has a case to answer, let it be now so that we know if he has been banned or not. Mapezas case must be handled by the Ethics Committee now so that whoever should be in charge of the Burundi game has all the time to plan.

If Mapeza is cleared, then he should continue with his project; but if he is banned, then let Gumbo take over. But this should be done when there is still time.

It is time to act, Cuthbert Dube. Walk the talk. We still have three months to prepare for the game against Burundi or else it will be another sad story. Failure to plan is planning to fail.

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