Warriors fret over Msipa cold, sore throat
ZIMBABWE midfielder Emmaculate Msipa, who is battling a bout of cold and a severe throat strain, is likely to miss tonight's match against Egypt at the Africa Women Nations Cup finals here.
The match at the Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium kicks off at 8PM Zimbabwe time. The Black Rhinos Queens midfielder featured in the goalless opener against South Africa but was heavily weighed down by the bug.
Msipa requested to play the first game despite being under the weather. However, Mighty Warriors coach Shadreck Mlauzi yesterday could not completely rule her out of the match.
“She picked up a cold on our way here and with the sickness of this nature, which has respiratory concerns, we don't want to risk her.
“So we might rest her so that she completely recuperates. She had light training, she’s still part of the team and we will see how it goes," said Mla uzi.
The coach is, however, not short of options in that department where he can also choose to start with Aldigrade Bhamu. Zimbabwe drew 0-0 with South Africa in their first match of the tournament and Mlauzi yesterday said the game against Egypt is a must win for his team.
Zimbabwe are still fancying their chances as the group is still open. Hosts Cameroon are at the top with three points after recording a 2-0 win over the Egyptians in the tournament opener.
Zimbabwe and South Africa have a point each. Two teams will progress to the semi-finals of the tournament which ends on December 3.
"Getting maximum points is where the emphasis is, goals will be a bonus. It’s going to be yet another important game for us," said Mlauzi.
The Mighty Warriors coach will not read much into the warm-up match they had against Egypt a few weeks ago which Zimbabwe won.
"It’s going to be a tight match. All the teams in the group are fighting for points and it is really difficult.That match gave us a hints on their game. We know the Egyptians, they like to feign injuries. We saw it in that game.
"So we expect more or less the same approach, more or less the defensive set-up they had against Cameroon.”
Egypt coach Mohamed Mustapha said women's football in his country was on the rebound. "I don't think we have come to the tournament to share points but to take points.
"Of course, we haven't made it to the tournament in 17 years but we showed we are better by qualifying again now.
“Football in Egypt, especially on the women's, side has been evolving," he said.