Loga wields axe

WARRIORS manager Zdravko Logarusic says he is deeply disappointed by the way his side missed golden chances before conceding three goals against Algeria in Algiers on Thursday last week and has promised to ring changes to the starting line-up when the two teams meet again at the National Sports Stadium this afternoon.

BY HENRY MHARA

Zimbabwe fell 3-1 to the African champions in a match that they could have at least got away with a point had they converted the chances that came their way.

The hosts took full advantage to ruthlessly punish the visitors and consolidated their position at the top of Group H of this 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying campaign.

Many also believe that the goals that the Warriors conceded were too soft while Logarusic described as naïve the mistakes that were made by his defenders.

He is desperate to win and will demand a determined effort from his charges who could find themselves third on the log standings by the end of the day if Zambia beat Botswana in the other group match.

Only two teams qualify to the 2022 Afcon finals set to be hosted by Cameroon.

Logarusic said he would make tough choices regarding his team selection, so all eyes will be on the team sheet as the Croat takes charge of the Warriors at home for the first time.

“We will have to put some players with fresh blood because some players are very tired. Some also had a lot of travelling up and down without enough time for rest so a few players will come into the team,” Logarusic said after the team’s final training session at the match venue yesterday.

“There could be two or three players who didn’t start who could come in. In each department we will have to make some changes, in the midfield line, the attack and the defensive line, we will have to put in some fresh legs and give everyone a chance.”

Most of the drills at yesterday’s training were on the team’s attack, a clear indication that the home side will go for broke in search of a win.

“We are looking for revenge,” Logarusic vowed. “We conceded three goals which we shouldn’t have conceded because we are not bad. We just made some mistakes and we also had some very good chances so we had a decent game. We were playing the best team in Africa without proper preparation and training. We didn’t know each other. But now we have trained together a bit and we have worked together more properly.”

“We have also spent some time to work on defence and some game situations because we expect to attack a little bit than we did in Algeria and they will try to catch us on counterattacks. We have worked on our defence on how to stay compact, how to cover each other in case a mistake happens.”

Warriors captain Knowledge Musona also conceded his boys could have done better in the first match. Unlike in the first game where the players trained just once as a team, he believes they have had time to work together this time around.

“We have been training very hard to try to correct the mistakes that we made in Algeria. We will need to convert the chances that come our way as well. We expect to play a very good match tomorrow (today). We feel ready,” he said.

“The players are very confident. Everyone is happy and the morale is high. It’s a good sign that we are ready to fight and give the best for the flag. We can’t wait to play and give something to the nation.”

The match will be played in an empty stadium, so there will be no fans to push the players when the chips are down.

“There is nothing we can change. We will just do our best and play to win. I know the supporters will be supporting us from home so we will try to make them happy all the
same.

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