Zifa meets over Pasuwa’s future

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HARARE – Warriors coach Kalisto Pasuwa’s future will be top of the agenda when the Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) High Performance Committee (HPC) meets today.


The Omega Sibanda-chaired committee will meet in the capital to review the Warriors’ performance at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) finals in Gabon.


Some of the members in the HPC are Sunday Chidzambwa, Moses Chunga, Rahman Gumbo, Innocent Chogugudza and Masimba Chihowa.


Zimbabwe were knocked out of the tournament in the group stages after defeats to Senegal, Tunisia and a stalemate against Algeria.


“The meeting will deliberate on the Warriors’ performance at the Afcon tournament,” Zifa spokesperson Xolisani Gwesela said.


“As you are aware the HPC does not make any decisions they can only come up with recommendations which they will forward to the executive committee.


“The coach is also going to provide the committee with his report and that report will also be discussed during the meeting.”


Pasuwa currently has one year left on his current deal with Zifa but in the contract there is a clause which requires the association to review his results at the end of the first year.


The former Dynamos coach’s first year comes to an end on January 31 and in the event Zifa are not pleased with his results, they have an option to terminate his contract.


Although he hinted at quitting the team after the Afcon exit, Pasuwa’s manager Gibson Mahachi revealed his client was willing to continue in the hot seat.


However, Pasuwa’s shortcomings were cruelly exposed as the Warriors flattered to deceive with some insipid displays in Gabon.


First it was in the opening match with Algeria when Pasuwa surprisingly set out his team to defend deep in the second half against the Desert Foxes.


In the first period, Zimbabwe had troubled the North Africans with some enterprising attacking football to carry a 2-1 lead at half time.


Despite the galaxy of stars in the Algeria team, the Desert Foxes had by far deeper-lying problems and the Warriors let them off the hook by playing negatively in the last 45 minutes allowing Riyad Mahrez to equalise with nine minutes to go.


In the second game against Senegal, Pasuwa clearly misled by the performance against a poor Algeria, tried to go toe-to-toe with the Lions of Teranga.


It proved to be a poor decision in the end as the Warriors conceded two goals in the opening 14 minutes after failing to contain the fire power of Sadio Mane, Balde Keita and Mame Diouf.


After his back five had conceded four goals in the opening two matches, Pasuwa decided to stick with his backline in the final group game against the Carthage Eagles.


Once again, it was a bad call by the Warriors gaffer as his team shipped in four goals in the first half before going on to lose the match 4-2 to exit the tournament with only a single point.


In three matches, Pasuwa’s defence conceded eight at a rate of 2,6 goals per match.


Some of Pasuwa’s tactical substitutions left a lot to be desired during the tournament while the decision to stick with Elisha Muroiwa at the heart of the defence was questionable.


Muroiwa had limited game time in the 2016 season with the Glamour Boys as he was constantly on the treatment table.


However, the coach has some mitigating factor in his favour considering that Zimbabwe’s preparations were not the best.


Initially, he had wanted to hold a training camp in Triangle in order to acclimatise to the heat in West Africa but had to abandon those plans as Zifa did not provide the funds.


When the team finally joined camp in December, firstly there was an accommodation crisis as the players refused to stay at the dilapidated Zifa Village in Mt Hamden.


In the end, the Footballers Union of Zimbabwe saved the situation when they booked the side at a hotel in the CBD.


The team also lost precious training time when Zifa failed to pay the $60 required to book the National Sports Stadium.


Zimbabwe’s departure for a training camp in Cameroon was also delayed after a bonus dispute between Zifa and the players hit a deadlock.


The players even boycotted a send-off ceremony organised by  government where then acting-President Emmerson Mnangagwa was supposed to be the guest of honour.

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