BY TAWANDA TAFIRENYIKA
Zifa has dangled a US$600 000 bonus to Warriors coach Norman Mapeza if he manages to take the Zimbabwe national senior men’s team to the Fifa 2022 World Cup finals in Qatar.
Mapeza was appointed Warriors interim coach last week after the association sacked Zdravko Logarušic.
NewsDay Sport was yesterday told that Mapeza will take 5% of the qualification bonus that comes from Fifa.
Every country that qualifies to the tournament will receive US$12 million, with the eventual winners claiming a further US$40 million.
Last week, there were complaints that Zifa preferred to reward foreign coaches ahead of local coaches.
Loga, who was sacked following a string of poor results, was promised 10% qualification bonus for the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) and he walked away with US$55 000 after qualifying the Warriors to Cameroon.
Although Zifa board members refused to divulge the nature of Mapeza’s short-term contract, NewsDay Sport understands the FC Platinum gaffer has been promised a 5% qualification bonus.
“Zifa has always tried to motivate coaches. It (Zifa) knows that if the team qualifies, it means more money coming to its coffers. We have always had incentives in place. There are incentives that have been tabled for Mapeza like any other coach,” the source said.
“Of course, it is not going to be easy for him to qualify the team given the way the campaigned started.”
Mapeza was given the freedom to select his assistants and he picked Mandla Mpofu and Taurai Mangwiro.
However, he takes over a team whose morale has reached rock bottom after a dull 0-0 draw against South Africa’s Bafana Bafana followed by a 1-0 defeat away to lowly Ethiopia which left the Warriors at the bottom of their group.
Zimbabwe trail log leaders South Africa by three points, with Ghana and Ethiopia both on three points after two matches.
The Warriors face the Black Stars of Ghana in back-to-back clashes early next month.
After that, they will make the trip to South Africa before they round off with a home match against Ethiopia.
Only the group winners will qualify to the next stage of the qualifying process.
Five teams from Africa will be part of the 32 teams at the finals next year.
Mapeza will be hoping that the United Kingdom government can relax its strict quarantine requirements so that he can call up the UK-based contingent.
These include Aston Villa’s Marvelous Nakamba, Bournemouth’s Jordan Zemura, Macauley Bonne, and Tendayi Darikwa who were barred from travelling to Zimbabwe for the matches against South Africa and Ethiopia.
Zimbabwe is among the countries classified under the red zone and travellers from the country are required to quarantine for ten days.
Last week, the UK government removed some countries from the red zone but Zimbabwe remained under that classification.
Zifa is hoping that Fifa can strike a deal with the UK government for the players to receive a special waiver.
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