National Under-17 soccer coach Lloyd Chigove has named a virtually unchanged side to travel to Mozambique for the African Youth Championships first round, second leg qualifier on Saturday.
Report by Henry Mhara
The Young Warriors, who drew the first leg 2-2 at Gwanzura Stadium a fortnight ago, are expected to leave for Maputo by road today.
Chigove yesterday named his travelling squad, making a single change to the team that lined up in the first leg. Emmanuel Mandiranga of Aces Youth Academy, the institution that nurtured Warriors striker Knowledge Musona, is the only player that has been added to the squad.
Mandiranga was initially called up for the first leg before he was dropped from the final squad. Chigove said he kept the same team to maintain the co-ordination that has developed in the team.
“Those players now understand each other well. They drew the first leg, but I want to believe they are still good enough to take us through,” said Chigove.
Zimbabwe need an outright win or a high scoring draw to progress to the second round whose finals will be staged in Morocco next year.
The Young Warriors played two friendly matches against Zambia during the weekend, which all ended in draws. Chigove believes the two matches were enough to prepare for the match.
“The matches against Zambia gave us an indicator on the areas where we need to improve. We worked on the boys’ techniques and the tactics we are going to use. The boys are geared for the match and I want to believe we will win,” said the confident gaffer.
If the Young Warriors get a positive result in Mozambique, they will play Congo in the second round, while Egypt (seeded) and a winner between Tanzania and Kenya are waiting in the final qualifying round.
Tatenda Munditi, Tatenda Mukuruva, Carlos Mavhurume, Bastos Chihowa, Levingston Jenti, Nyasha Munetsi, Kelvin Bingala, Emmanuel Mandiranga, Bret Amidu, Tinotenda Kadewere, Denzel Chimwemwe, Cleopas Kapupurika, Sean Kwaranika, Matheus Choreva, Arnold Mpofu, Washington Parira, Nigel Makumbe, Viali Tadzoka.