Like the rest of our culture, the world of sports has become increasingly politicized and polarized in recent years. Cheering for certain teams, or even sports, can begin to feel like an ideological act.
The Warriors played to a 2-2 draw against the highly rated Algerian team. A result that left the soccer loving multitude of Zimbabwe divided.
Understandably so, the Warriors could have easily strolled away with a victory but the amount of criticism is unjustified so as one Warriors fan Bernard Chimuka nicely put it. Tonight the Warriors face the Teranga lions of Senegal in a crucial group B encounter.
Chimuka took to our Facebook page, narrating emotionally why we should root for the Warriors patriotically.
Full text below:
“The on going African Nations Cup tournament has exposed the confusion and to some extent, stupidity, that I didn’t know exist in some Zimbabweans. The same people who declared that there was no way Zimbabwe was going to get anything from their game against Algeria are on the loose again, telling us that the Warriors stand NO chance against Senegal. And to imagine that most of these people are Zimbabweans is sickening. Where is your patriotism? Why are you against your country to that extent?
“Some of you wanted Zimbabwe to lose handsomely against Algeria and you’re now backing Senegal to beat us just because you want your prediction and senseless gospel of doom to come to pass. Nonsense!!!!! Get me right here. I’m not saying Zimbabwe are favourites to beat Senegal and Tunisia…I’m only saying just as they did against Algeria, they have a slight chance to spring a surprise.
“And if you know football as much as you claim, surely you should appreciate that anything is possible which is why Leicester City are the current English champions. Which is why Zambia won this very tournament a few years ago. Which is also why Iceland, with a population less than that of Masvingo province, went as far as the quarter-finals of the Euros last year at the expense of England. I get pissed off when i hear Samuel Kuffour, a Ghanaian who has played football at the highest level, running out of superlatives to describe Khama Billiart, while some Zimbabweans, in their wisdom or lack of it, refuses to give their countrymen even a 1% chance.
“Forgive my language but i honestly believe there is an element of stupidity in that behaviour. It makes me angry when i see Andre Arendse, a South African who has played football at the highest level, being impressed by Zimbabwe to the extent of saying the Warriors have what it takes to be the surprise package of the tournament while some Zimbabweans are so pessimistic to the extent that they refuse to see or say anything positive about their national team.
“Make no mistake, I know Zimbabwe is a small country without any tangible history of doing well in football but that does not justify the kind of negative sentiments that i have been hearing from some Zimbabweans. Callisto Pasuwa’s men were 8 minutes away from beating an Algerian side littered with world class players, which could have been arguably the most shocking result of the Nations Cup history, but still there are people, Zimbabweans for that matter, who refuse to give their team ANY chance whatsoever. Go Warriors Go”