When the World Cup qualifier between Zimbabwe and South Africa was postponed, the decision irked the local football-loving public, which was anticipating the blockbuster clash.
The Warriors were set to take on their arch-rivals Bafana Bafana at the National Sports Stadium on June 5 and then travel to Ethiopia days later but CAF was forced to cancel all games on the continent, because of a stadium crisis.
Back then, it appeared as if September, the date set for the rescheduled games, was too far, but now, its less than two months away.
Between the time when that decision was made and now, a lot has happened as far as the national team is concerned.
Football stakeholders cranked pressure on the Felton Kamambo-led ZIFA board to sack Zdravko Logarusic, understandably so considering the firebrand Croat’s poor record in the Warriors dugout since his appointment in February 2020.
Apart from finishing the relay for AFCON qualification, which was started by Joey ‘Mafero’ Antipas, Logarusic has been been heavily criticised, to the point that fans stopped him in the streets of Harare to tell him point-blank that he should go.
Under his guidance, the Warriors were beaten like eggs at a hotel, when they stepped on Cameroonian soil for CHAN 2020 last January.
Calls for his sacking intensified when Zimbabwe, record holders of the Cosafa Cup, turned into weeping boys of the regional showpiece and exited without a win, for the first time ever.
Despite there being overwhelming evidence that the team is not developing under Logarusic’s mentorship, ZIFA appears to have made the decision to keep him, a decision we will support, not because we agree with it, but because of the unconditional love we have for our beloved Warriors.
As the count down for the start of the Road to Qatar nears, we should simply remind those in charge of administering football in the country, that this is arguably our biggest chance to book a place for the first time, at the global extravaganza.
World Cup qualification has evaded Zimbabwe since independence, but with this golden generation of Warriors stars, and the fact that Ghana are not the powerhouse they were years ago, fans can be understood for daring to dream.
Similarly, South Africa are not scary either. They are on a re-buiding exercise after failing to qualify for AFCON 2021, something Zimbabwe did with a game to spare.
Put simply, all Group G participants; Ghana, South Africa, Zimbabwe and Ethiopia, have an equal chance of topping the group.
Let us now shift focus to the World Cup qualifiers.