Newly-appointed Warriors assistant coach Mandla “Lulu” Mpofu has paid tribute to head coach Norman Mapeza for choosing him as one of his right-hand men in the senior men’s national team set-up.
Mapeza was appointed national team coach on a short-term contract ahead of Group G qualifiers against Ghana (home and away), Ethiopia (home) and South Africa (away).
The FC Platinum coach picked Triangle mentor Taurai Mangwiro, Mpofu and former Warriors goalkeeper Energy Murambadoro as his assistants.
Mpofu, who was working with Mapeza when the Warriors beat Liberia 3-0 in an AFCON qualifier in 2019, is pleased with the reunion and is optimistic that their combination, together with Mangwiro could bring success. He said:
I would like to thank Mapeza for acknowledging me to come and help the situation at the Warriors.
I hope we work hard in our relationship to get positive results. Obviously, it is all eyes on us and there is still a chance for the Warriors to qualify for the World Cup.
It’s pressure mounting, but of course, I am happy and once again would like to thank Norman and ZIFA for again giving me another chance with the senior national team.
Mpofu said that the Warriors’ job will not adversely affect Highlanders, with the Castle Lager Premier League (PSL) set to resume at the end of next month. He said:
World Cup games are on the Fifa calendar and when these games are played all other local games will be suspended.
I don’t see any interruption with my job at Highlanders coming in and I think that is why Mapeza jumped into the ship.
I think the system is well structured and our commitment to the national team will not disturb us at our respective clubs.