The Warriors will today in Blantyre play the Flames of Malawi in an international friendly at Kamuzu Stadium, This was after the chaotic preps that saw ZIFA organising a last minute charter flight to the Southern Africa nation of Malawi after a public outcry when it emerged they were planning on transporting the Warriors to Malawi by road.
Below are some of the eventualities that transpired before the Warriors’ depature yesterday according to The Sunday Mail:
- Zdravko “Loga” Logarusic was initially targeting to use 17 foreign-based players, but he was forced to include local players who were last on the field in November last year, after some Europe based star failed to make it.
- The warriors were initially set for a 600km road trip to Blantyre until ZIFA shelved the plan secured a chartered plane, which cost them about US$50 000. This came after a public outcry over the road trip from various stakeholders including the Sport and Recreation Commission, who directed that ZIFA either cancel the friendly or fly to Malawi using some of the financial resources they received from FIFA as part of Covid-19 relief fund for the resumption of football.
- Loga managed to arrange at only 2 training sessions at the ZIFA Village before the team’s departure.
Addressing the chaotic preparations, ZIFA Speokeperson Xolisani Gwesela blamed it all on the ongoing pandemic:
Most of the challenges were Covid-19-related. It was even difficult to organise air transport because there are no commercial flights out of Zimbabwe at the moment because of the coronavirus restrictions in place.
We also failed to secure some of the players we had targeted for this match because clubs are not obliged by FIFA to release players due to the current travel restrictions wrought by the coronavirus. But we are glad everything is now in order. The ZIFA executive made frantic efforts to secure a charter plane to Malawi
More: The Sunday Mail