‘Musona open to Warriors return’

Knowledge Musona is open to a return to the Warriors fold, just over a year after retiring from international football,  Soccer24 has established.

The 33-year-old Aces Youth Academy graduate brought down the curtain on his glittering international career in May last year.

Musona, who made his debut for the Zimbabwe senior men’s national team in 2010, called it a day with 51 caps under his belt, having scored 24 goals in the gold and green Warriors strip —14 shy of Peter Ndlovu’s record tally of 38.

Zimbabwe national teams General Manager Wellington Mpandare revealed that the former Kaizer Chiefs star is willing to come out of retirement if he is still needed by the coaches.

“If the new coach wants him, chances are we can bring him back. I had a chat with him during the off-season when he promised me that he might reconsider his decision,” Mpandare told Soccer24.

“It all depends now on whether or not the new coach wants him. If he (the incoming Warriors coach) wants him, then I will obviously engage him and convince him to come back and represent Zimbabwe again.

“Remember, Knowledge (Musona) is a loyal son of the soil. He loves his country, he is grounded and he is one player that will not be difficult to convince to come back because I know him very well even outside football.

“I’m very close to the family as well, and I can even go through his wife. So if the coaches feel he (Musona) is still needed, it will not be difficult for me convince him to play for the national team again,” added Mpandare.

But what led to Musona’s unforseen retirement in the first place?

“During the last Afcon finals in Cameroon, he told me that he was going to retire from international football after the tournament. We talked about it with Norman Mapeza, who was the coach then,” said Mpandare.

“He (Musona) simply told us that he wanted to concentrate more on club football, having served well in the national team and we just wished him well.

“He told us that it was the right time to hand over the responsibility to other upcoming players but realistically,  the frustrations were coming from what he went through as the captain of the national team.

“If you look at what happened at the 2019 Afcon finals in Egypt, it was draining for him and everyone who was involved in the negotiations over appearance fees and how the tournament ended.

“He actually wanted to leave after the 2019 finals but he then decided to stay on. But after the 2021 tournament, he said “enough is enough” and quit.

Added Mpandare: “Remember, at one time before that tournament (Afcon 2021), the players were not focused because they thought Zimbabwe was not going to be allowed to participate since FIFA had suspended the Felton Kamambo-led ZIFA executive.”

“The suspended Kamambo-led administration didn’t want the team to be allowed to participate and there was a lot of talk of them (the Kamambo-led board) pushing for FIFA and CAF to boot us out of the tournament.

“So, that on its own was a distraction and the captain (Musona) felt he didn’t want go have all those problems and decided to walk away,” Mpandare added.






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