THE Highlanders leadership left the country yesterday for a tour of Europe that will see them going to France, England, Spain and Belgium to visit yet-to-be-named clubs.
The tour is a learning venture organised by the club’s principal sponsors, Sakunda Holdings, who announced the expedition some months back.
Club board chairman Luke Mnkandla, executive chairman Johnfat Sibanda, club secretary Morgen Dube and treasurer Busani Mthombeni are part of the trip.
The flew out to France, but Mnkandla and Sibanda will then head to Manchester, England, while Dube and Mthombeni will fly to Barcelona in Spain.
The quartet will then meet in Brussels, Belgium, where they will wind up the tour.
Dube yesterday confirmed the scheduled tour.
“We are about to embark on a tour of Europe courtesy of our principal sponsors Sakunda. You will remember that some time back, maybe six months or so ago, the sponsor announced that he was intending to take the administrators of the football club for a European tour. All along we have been working on the modalities and now we are ready and should be taking off to Harare this morning (yesterday) where we are connecting to start the tour,” Dube said.
He said in England, they would also meet up with Highlanders fans who are domiciled in that country.
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“The major objectives of this tour are to give us what we term a ‘look and learn.’ We will be meeting clubs in that end and, of course, the fans. As you know, Highlanders have got fans all-over the world, particularly in the United Kingdom. We are already in communication with our membership that end who will then meet the two chairmen in their areas and discuss what is happening with their club here,” Dube said.
In Spain, he said the tour would not involve supporters, but hoped to forge partnerships for personnel exchanges, from players to administrators.
“We are hoping to get partnerships and have an appreciation of the infrastructure in these respective countries. We will also be engaging them on how they are structured as football clubs. Of course, we are hoping to create possible relations in terms of player exchange and technical staff exchange as well as secretariat staff exchange,” Dube said.
“We are not going there to implement anything when we come back home. But we are going there to look and learn and then as the decision-making board of the club we would then go through what we would have learned compare with what we have here and what the direction the club wants to take.”
Meanwhile, Dube said club chief executive officer Ronald Moyo “will be travelling to South Africa where a PAN Africa Sports management workshop is being held.”
It’s a seven-day conference.