Mutekede praises local coaches
Innocent Kurira, [email protected]
ZIFA technical director Wilson Mutekede says the level of competition in the local league has improved.
The country has been under suspension from Fifa since last year with national teams and clubs inactive in international tournaments.
Mutekede said should Fifa lift their suspension on Zimbabwe today, the country would have a starting point as the quality of football has greatly improved.
Courses at elementary level have started while the highest – Caf A has seen two refresher courses conducted. Referees are due for another re-test this weekend.
“We might be under suspension but look at the level of competition in the local league. We have seen a tightly contested competition where the gap between the teams is minimal.
“We have been watching a number of stalemates and l believe part of the credit should go to the coaches. These guys have gone a notch up in terms of tactics which is why l believe every team is competitive,” said Mutekedze.
He said the courses ZIFA has been organising for the coaches helped them to catch up with the latest trends.
“When we get re-admitted it will not be a matter of us starting from zero. As l have said before, the ban does not mean we stop learning,” said Mutekede.
He said it was unfortunate that the country missed out on the Fifa Talent Development Schemes (FTDS) and funding.
“It’s sad because all the other countries have already done the project but we are hopeful once we are back from isolation, we work on the project,” said Mutekede.
The main goal of the FTDS is to help raise the standards of national teams’ football around the world for both men and women.
This is driven by FIFA’s desire for a long-term dedication to global talent development.
Zimbabwe expects to get good news from FIFA in the next three weeks.
Hopes are high that a Normalisation Committee will be put in place to replace Gift Banda’s board that Fifa never recognised after Felton Kamambo, Philemon Machana and Bryton Malandule board was booted out.
While Mutekede speaks of improved standards, on the contrary, fans are staying home because of the mediocre football displayed by top league clubs.
The Warriors are provisionally part of the draw for the World Cup qualifiers, which will precede the 45th Confederation of African Football (CAF) Ordinary General Assembly and will be conducted in Cotonou, Benin on July 12.
Nine teams from the continent will qualify for the expanded World Cup, an increase of four from the slots that have been traditionally reserved for Africa.
After a hugely successful World Cup in Qatar, FIFA will stage the 2026 edition that will be co-hosted by Canada, Mexico and the United States of America.