Tomorrow, the Warriors have a huge load on their shoulders, as they go into battle in their first match of the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) against Algeria.
Comment: NewsDay Editor
To say the Warriors are massive underdogs in the group is an understatement, but maybe going into the tournament, this is what the team needs.
While the country craves success on the sporting scene, the Warriors are not necessarily burdened nor under pressure, meaning they can compete in a relaxed manner and that could work to the national team’s advantage.
Any result that the Warriors get is a bonus, as they are the lowest-ranked team in the group that also includes Senegal and Tunisia.
That they are rank outsiders should not dishearten them, but instead should encourage the team, as they can follow the example of Leicester City in the English Premier League, who were not given a chance by anyone but turned the football world on its head.
Zimbabwe is desperate for success of any kind, and if it were to be achieved in the most popular sport in the country, that could be enough to lift the mood in a country that has not had much reason to smile in a long time because of social and economic problems.
Football is like a religion in Zimbabwe, while some use it as therapeutic distraction from the problems they are confronted with and there can be no imagining what the national team’s success would do for the country.
So, as the Warriors troop onto the field, they deserve everyone’s support, as they carry the hopes of a nation starved of success.
Besides the bonus fiasco, we believe the Warriors have had a fair preparation and that should mean they are ready to go out there and deliver.
While such bungling has become almost synonymous with local football, it is pleasing that Zifa has put this episode behind them and everyone is backing the national team.
It is embarrassing that each time there is a such a tournament, there is always such drama and there is desperate need for the country to fix this side of the game, as it has the effect of discouraging potential national team players from representing the country.
Examples abound of players that could easily walk into the team, but have no interest of doing so like Tendayi Darikwa and others, who have been lost to other nations like Brendan Galloway.
With the administrative bundling now out of the way, the onus is now on the Warriors to go out there and make the nation proud.
We wish them all the best and are with them all the way.