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Prepare Warriors for Afcon qualifiers

In Africa the Zimbabwe senior men's national football team are now ranked 38th.

The Warriors slumped to 129th position on the Fifa World Rankings that were released on Thursday.

In Africa the Zimbabwe senior men's national football team are now ranked 38th.

The major consequence of this ranking is seeding at the 2025 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) draw.

With the latest ranking, which will be used to determine seeding for the July 4 draw in Johannesburg, Zimbabwe will be placed in pot 4 which contains the 12 lowest-ranked sides.

Previously, the Warriors often found themselves seeded in pot 3.

But this time they have failed to make it into the top 36 nations in the Afcon draw.

This only spells a tough draw in their bid to return to the continental premier tournament.

The lower ranking is a consequence of the two defeats the Warriors suffered against South Africa and Lesotho in Fifa World Cup qualifiers earlier this month.

As if the two defeats were not embarrassing enough, the Zifa normalisation committee led by Lincoln Mutasa is struggling to organise camping for the Warriors ahead of the Cosafa tournament.

For a country that is in the process of rebuilding its national team, the Cosafa tournament is very important.

Yet the committee, whose members draw hefty perks, are failing on such simple tasks.

In South Africa, some of the members are alleged to have muddled team selection, telling coaches which players to field.

This committee has been in place for almost a year now yet they have struggled to fulfill their mandate.

Football has had a catalogue of problems over the last few decades.

This committee currently running football were given an opportunity by Fifa to normalise things after the failures of the past administrators led by Felton Kamambo.

The national soccer team cannot continue to be a source of embarrassment.

Losing to Lesotho, who have never been to any major tournament, is inexcusable, judging by the talent that Zimbabwe had in the ranks for that match.

Some have blamed the coaches led by Jairos Tapera.

But Tapera was only appointed days before the trip to South Africa after someone at Zifa had already selected the squad.

He was the third interim coach employed by the normalisation committee, which is a big anomaly.

The question is why did they not just stick with Baltemar Brito who took charge of the first games of the World Cup qualifiers?

Brito picked up two points which was a fair return considering they played Rwanda away before hosting Nigeria in the same country.

Given time, he would have planned well ahead for Lesotho and South Africa ties.

There are no guarantees he would have won points, but keeping him on the job was the logical thing to do.

Now the Warriors sit rock bottom on the Group C table five points behind the leaders.

It's difficult not to say the normalisation committee messed up this qualifier and other things.

Football is the nation's number one sport and we implore authorities to make decisions in the nation's interest rather than get influenced by petty personal squabbles.

With the Afcon qualifiers starting in September, this is an opportunity to put our house in order and prepare the Warriors as best as possible.

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