Disappointed Matawu waves goodbye

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FORMER Warriors and Chicken Inn midfielder Clement Matawu is disappointed that his career ended in anti-climax fashion.

BY FORTUNE MBELE

The 38-year-old announced his retirement from football early this week, to end a glittering two-decade career for one of the best midfielders to ever emerge from the country.

Starting at the now-defunct Motor Action, Matawu also played in Poland before returning to Zimbabwe to join Chicken Inn in 2016 where he has been playing ever since.

He had hoped to make this season his swan-song year, but the plans were disrupted after the league failed to take off in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This was going to be my last year of playing football,” Matawu told NewsDay Sport in an interview yesterday.

“At the beginning of the season, I sat down with my father, mentor, coach and brother Joey Antipas and discussed my future in the team and we agreed that I would run my last lap this year,” he said.

Antipas, who is the Chicken Inn coach, worked with the attacking player at Motor Action.

Matawu, who won the league title with Chicken Inn in 2016, had hoped to sign out in style. He had prepared for the season and was hoping to help his team win silverware.

“I really wanted to give it a good push this year, starting with the off-season which I really pushed myself.”

Chicken Inn travelled to Malawi early this year as part of their pre-season preparations, but their efforts were in vain as the season failed to take off.

“My performances in the four-team tournament in Malawi gave me the zeal and optimism that this was going to be a great season for me as an individual and as a team. But because there has been no football, everyone is disappointed.”

Sources said Matawu was currently doing administrative work at Chicken Inn and the club was contemplating including him in Antipas’ technical team.

He seems to have prepared for life after playing as he is a holder of a Bachelor of Science Honours Degree in Sport Science and Coaching which he got last year from the University of Science and Technology.

“My degree has opened my eyes to endless opportunities in football. For now, I won’t divulge much, but you will be seeing me around in football circles,” he said.

Matawu is arguably one of the rare talents to ever grace the local football scene. He was so good that he was voted the Soccer Star of the Year in 2006 and was a best player finalist a record six times.

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