Perspective| ZIFA Normalisation Committee might actually worsen Zimbabwean football

Initially, in the eyes of many people within the local football fraternity, criticising the ZIFA Normalisation Committee simply meant allegiance to certain members of the troubled association’s secretariat.

The misbeggoten view that a section of the media was ‘fighting in the corner’ of certain members of the secretariat —particularly the trio of Technical Director Wilson Mutekede, Acting Chief Executive Officer Xolisani Gwesela and former national teams General Manager Wellington Mpandare,  resulted in many people failing to look at the Normalisation Committee’s early days in office, with extensive eyes.

This is a committe whose chairman Lincon Mutasa showed signs of being a total stranger to morden football but many ignored them.

In August, a month after the Committee was appointed by world governing body FIFA, Mutasa, in a telephone interview with this publication on the backdrop of a disastrous Warriors coach advert, said: “We might have someone without the required qualifications but having the required skills to motivate the players. Remember Reinhard Fabisch was a great motivator.”

In the same interview, the former Dynamos chairman proved that he doesn’t even know the difference between the UEFA Pro Licence and UEFA A coaching badges, which somewhat explained the grave errors in the advert in question.

But those early boobs cannot compare to what happened this week.

The Committee announced to the nation that the Warriors would host Botswana in an international friendly on Saturday, for recently-apppointed coach Baltemar Brito to start preparing for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers slated for November.

The Committee even arranged police escort for the purpoted match, announced gate charges and organised match officials.

But the Botswana Football Association (BFA) professed ignorance over the match and publicily distance itself from it.

That non existent match resulted in the postponement of Castle Lager Premier Soccer League matchday 27 matches.

The Normalisation Committee knew probably two hours after announcing the Botswana friendly that it wouldn’t happen, but waited more than 24 hours to let the nation know.

Members of the Committee let millions of Zimbabweans who are loyal to print media, wake up to headlines saying that the country’s senior national tteam would be playing against Botswana on Saturday yet Mutasa and company went to sleep the previous night knowing that wasn’t going to be the case.

On Monday, the Warriors trio of Tendayi Darikwa, Teenage Hadebe and Jordan Zemura, got the shock of their lives when they got the national team call ups through WhatsApp texts from someone who is not even the team manager Clemence Matawu.

When it finally became public knowledge that the Botswana game was not going to be played for “reasons beyond the Committee’s control”, a 24-member Warriors squad was announced for a ‘training camp’ during the international break.

Defending league champions FC Platinum have four players in that squad —Wallace Magalane, Brian Banda and Thandolwenkosi Ngwenya and Walter Musona.

Dynamos have three players in the squad —Tanaka Shandirwa,  Prince Tafiremutasa Frank Makarati.

After the Premier Soccer League (PSL) made a u-turn and rescheduled league games back to this Saturday and Sunday, DeMbare have reportedly written to the PSL seeking the postponement of their match against Manica Diamonds scheduled for Saturday at Gibbo, citing incapacitation.

Granted, Zimbabwean football already had problems before Mutasa and company came on board but as Harvey MacKay said: “Exploring how you could make a bad situation worse can sometimes tell you what not to do.”

The Normalisation Committee has been in office for 92 days, 272 to go and one can be forgiven for impatiently waiting for the latter.

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