The Marvelous Nakamba Foundation (MNF) is set to launch an annual youth football tournament named the MNF Youth Invitation Tournament that will see teams from across the country taking part.
This year the competition is scheduled to take place in Bulawayo on 19 and 20 June with organisers having already sent in requests to the Sports and Recreation Commission, through the Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) to host the tourney.
ZIFA Bulawayo chairman, Francis Ntuta confirmed to The Sunday News that they are working closely with MNF to ensure the tournament becomes a reality. Said Ntuta:
We are all eager to see the game back, junior players are also itching to be back in the field and we hope this tournament will be the beginning of the return of junior football.
We know that we are now living in a new normal and are ready to meet whatever conditions that would be set for the tournament to be played. What is critical is that players get back on the pitch.
The tournament will feature only players aged 17 and below. The organisers will provide kits to be used during the tourney.
Teams that have been invited for this year’s tournament include Highlanders, Dynamos, Njube Spurs, Hwange Dynamo, Albun Academy, Bulawayo City, Ajax Hot Spurs and Chicken Inn.
The eight teams shall be placed in two groups of four with matches being played in a round-robin format and the two top teams in each group will proceed to the semi-finals.
Pool A winners will play Pool B runners up and vice versa in the semis with the winners proceeding to the finals.
MNF said they wanted to give the tournament a national outlook hence bringing in teams from outside the city.
MNF is the brainchild of Zimbabwe international and Aston Villa (UK) midfielder, Marvelous Nakamba.