WATCH: Homela supports regional games
THE Zifa Normalisation Committee’s proposed inter-regional games will provide a more transparent way of choosing national team players. He also called for the introduction of a selection committee.
A member of the technical committee put in place by the Normalisation Committee, legendary footballer Gibson Homela, who is also a coaches’ instructor believes in the process. He said it will provide a wider selection base for the coaches.
“The idea is to provide ourselves with a very broad selection base. Imagine where you are going to have four regions playing and out of those four regions, the coaches or the technical committee is going to be privileged in selecting the best players out of the four regions,” said Homela.
He said he was concerned with how they had gone about the business of selecting national teams in the past.
Homela made reference to the team that faced Namibia on President Mnangwagwa’s inauguration two weeks ago. He said in the limited time they had, he would not fault the selectors.
“I had the privilege to watch Zimbabwe playing against Namibia two weeks ago and I wouldn’t say it was a job well done because I thought it was something done in Harare and it was something done with a lot of limitation in selecting the players. I personally think we must be broad and also remember there is also the diaspora players which were not in that selection,” said Homela.
He called for a tracking mechanism that would ensure a thorough job is done and the best get to represent their country.
“I really wish there was a tracking mechanism (to track diaspora players) where we are able to keep track of the individual when he plays but at the moment, the other day I was surprised to listen to someone who came up with a selection, I think there were about 11 foreign based players, some I know but the rest I didn’t know, so I think if that is going to be the criteria by which we will choose the national team I beg to differ,” said Homela.
A group of Zimbabweans based in the disaspora has been advocating for some players to be part of the Warriors set up on the strength of Zimbabwe roots not merit. They do not mind if the player is playing or not.
They have also been accused of taking inducement fees for the boys to be capped and enhance their resumes abroad. Asked what he did during his time as national team coach and technical adviser, Homela confessed that the process was not that good.
“I must confess they were very limited then (foreign based players) and I must also confess that our system was also short then. It was not a system that we can rely upon, I think people were chosen because I knew there was Gibson in Scotland and those that I didn’t know were left out,” said Homela a great striker turned defender at both club and national team.
He advocated for a selection panel. “They should be a selection committee, their task should be to follow up, investigating and finding out all those that are abroad and not only do they concentrate on those that are abroad, they also come home and also look for the better players, that is the selection committee or the technical committee.
National team players, I would say you can go down 17, you can also get a very good national team player at the age of 17 so when we look at these players, we must expand our selection base, go wide,” said Homela.
Homela said for the national team age should not be a factor. In the past coaches and players belonging to one or two agents have dominated national teams.
The veteran football coach who is regarded with William Sibanda as the greatest players to turn out for Zimbabwe Saints, said meritocracy was the way to go.
He said age group teams would also follow suit and have regional games like was the case in the 1980s.
The best talent competed with each other through the Chibuku Trophy, Castle Cup, Manica Cup, Bonar Industries Cup and the CocaCola Under-18 contest.
Provincial champions got to play finalists from other regions in the finals