Aston Villa and Warriors midfielder Marvelous Nakamba, through his Marvelous Nakamba Foundation (MNF), has launched an annual youth football tournament that’s expected to happen next month.

The MNF Youth Invitation Tournament will see teams from across the country taking part, but the inaugural edition will only have eight sides, mostly from the Matabeleland region.

The invited sides include Highlanders, Dynamos, Njube Spurs, Hwange Dynamo, Albun Academy, Bulawayo City, Ajax Hot Spurs and Chicken Inn.

Only players aged 17 and below will be eligible to take part in the competition which is scheduled for Bulawayo on 19 and 20 June

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The organisers have already sent requests to the Sports and Recreation Commission, through the Zimbabwe Football Association to host the event.

According to the Sunday News, the foundation, which has also set up a football academy, said the main purpose of the tournament is to give the youngsters an opportunity to showcase their talent.

“Nakamba broke into the first team (of Bantu Rovers) at 17 years, and we believe that is when young players should be introduced to the top echelons of the game if they are to mature early.

“There seems to be a thought that only those who have reached 21-22 years are ready for the top-flight, which we believe is a wrong perception,” said MNF.