Depleted Warriors face Guinea
Tawachera joins Tsholotsho
TSHOLOTSHO FC have roped in ex-Quelaton and Zim Leopards coach Farai Tawachera to assist gaffer Lizwe Sweswe in their quest to fight relegation.
Tawachera fills the void left by former assistant coach Bongani Mafu, who found a new job at Botswana’s Mochudi Centre Chiefs.
Sweswe believes Tawachera will add a new dimension to his technical team.
“Football is about team work and I believe Tawachera will add value to the team, especially now that we’re fighting for our survival. He is one guy that used to assist me in the past when we were in Division One. Sometimes as a coach, you miss something and can’t know it all and that is why it is important to have someone coming to help,” said Sweswe.
Tawachera joins Tsholotsho from Zifa Bulawayo Metropolitan Province Division Two League side Chiwororo, who are at the top of table and gunning for promotion into the First Division.
The much travelled gaffer, who has also had stints with the now defunct CMED Gwanda, Talen Vision and Bulawayo Chiefs, among other teams, finds Tsholotsho swimming in the murky waters of relegation.
The Zhwane outfit is second from the bottom, tied on 13 points with anchors Border Strikers and have gone for seven games without a win. They need to start winning if they are to survive relegation.
Tsholotsho lost 1-2 to ZPC Kariba on Saturday, but Sweswe is confident of escaping the chop. They are four points behind Mutare City Rovers, who are third from the bottom.
“What we need is just one win and everything will be good. The problem we’re having is that week in, week out we play well but failing to score. We seem to struggle in the third attacking zone. The players really need to come to the party and show their technical ability in front of goal,” said Sweswe.
Tsholotsho’s next match is a tricky derby against How Mine, who were beaten 0-2 by Highlanders on Sunday. — @ZililoR AS the Warriors regrouped yesterday for their final African Cup of Nations qualifier against Guinea in Conakry on Sunday, coach Callisto Pasuwa and team manager Sharif Mussa insisted the Group L leaders remained strong despite missing four key players for various reasons. The Warriors have not played together since June 6 when they thrashed Malawi 3-0 at the National Sports Stadium in their penultimate qualifier to seal their place at the 2017 African Cup of Nations finals in Gabon. Despite having qualified already, Pasuwa wants his men to complete an unprecedented unbeaten run in a Nations Cup qualifying marathon. But the coach will have to make do without four players who have featured prominently in the previous Group L games – forwards Khama Billiat and Nyasha Mushekwi, midfielder Danny Phiri and defender Hardlife Zvirekwi. Rookie forward Marshal Mudehwe, who has been making cameo appearances in the qualifiers, has also been ruled out because of injuries he sustained in a car accident on Sunday night. However, both Pasuwa and team manager Mussa are confident the players at their disposal could still get the job done at the Stade du 28 Septembre in Conakry. Mussa said they had tried without much success to secure the release of bustling striker Mushekwi from his Chinese side with the club holding onto their leading scorer as they battle for the championship title.
Khamah hd had alreadyl db been omittedd as b both hh the coach and the player agreed on the need to rest him.
“We have also got news from Golden Arrows that Danny Phiri received a knock during their season-opening game against Orlando Pirates and he has not fully recovered from that.
“Hardlife, as you may already know, is suspended for picking up two yellow cards. So we have only called up Ronald Chitiyo in place of Mudehwe but we are not calling up more replacements for Mushekwi and Danny Phiri as we have the cover already,’’ Mussa said.
The Warriors team manager and his coach were, however, happy that the South Africabased contingent of Onismor Bhasera, skipper Willard Katsande, Kuda Mahachi, Blessing Moyo, Evans Rusike, Cuthbert Malajila and Tendai Ndoro had all flown into the country and joined eight of their local teammates at their first session at Gateway High School yesterday afternoon.
Talismanic forward Knowledge Musona, steady centreback Costa Nhamoinesu, Dutchbased Marvelous Nakamba and striker Matthew Rusike, who plies his trade in Sweden, are now set to link up with the rest of the Zimbabwe delegation in Conakry ahead of the game.
Mussa said they were now working on finalising the travel itinerary for the rest of the delegation which is tentatively set to leave Harare on Thursday and arrive in Conakry early on Friday.
“The plan that we are finalising is one which will enable us time to train on Friday and Saturday in Conakry and then play the game on Sunday with the Europe-based players all travelling from Brussels,’’ Mussa said.
While some people may view the game as a dead rubber, Pasuwa reiterated the need for continuity in the build-up to the Nations Cup tournament in Gabonb arguing heh could ld not afford to tinker much with the squad “in the name of team building’’.
The Warriors coach took cognisance of the fact that Zifa’s limited resources have meant that international friendly matches are hard to come by for his team and would want to use the few such games he can get to ensure they perfect on the squad that has so far done a good job for Zimbabwe.
“We have some of the players who are not playing and the other guys who joined new clubs and haven’t played games, so we will have to assess them and see how fit they are and how best we can go and train in Guinea.
“It is a game which is very important to us remember we have been having problems in terms of finances. I thought it is one game we need to use to be preparing for Afcon and if we can have these boys together maybe combinations will come out as we play these games,” said Pasuwa.
The coach said he would continue to try the best combinations for the Warriors in the run up to the Gabon tournament.
“We, in Zimbabwe, are different to a team like South Africa, they have many friendlies they can play and we have problems in terms of having friendly matches so I need continuity so for me to be changing a team nearly every day would be a problem.
“Remember, when we started this tournament, we had most of the players from the Under-23 and we were combining with some of the seniors who were coming in so we are still looking at some of those players again, we are rotating them and as for the combinations we need time to have combinations clicking.
“If I see two or three players in the local league playing well, we can take them but not the bulk of the players as people might want. We need continuity,” said Pasuwa.
Allen Gahadzikwa Table