The Sunday News
Mehluli Sibanda, Senior Sports Reporter
A SQUAD of 29 players has been named for Zimbabwe’s 2022 Fifa World Cup qualifier fixtures against South Africa as well as Ethiopia early next month.
Zimbabwe take on neighbours South Africa in Harare on 3 September before they clash with Ethiopia on 7 September.
Named in the squad are United Kingdom based players whose participation in the two fixtures remains a doubt. On Tuesday, English Premier League clubs unanimously agreed not to release players for international duty if they are travelling to UK red listed countries in terms of Covid-19 travel guidelines. Zimbabwe and Ethiopia appear on that list, which means players such as
Brendan Galloway, Jordan Zemura, Marvelous Nakamba, Admiral Muskwe, Macauley Bonne and David Moyo have to go into quarantine for 10 days on their return from international duty. This would see them miss a number of matches for their clubs.
In announcing the squad, the Zimbabwe Football Association expressed optimism on the availability of the UK based the players.
“We are still hopeful that all players will be available for the matches despite the adverse position taken by the English Premier League to bar players from fulfilling the national assignments citing England’s stringent quarantine regulations.
“We are engaging all clubs that have intimated that they are going to withhold players, hoping they will fulfill their obligations to release players as stated in the regulations on the status and transfer of players. We are confident that the team that we will eventually come up with will still represent the nation with pride and compete to the best of their abilities as true Warriors,’’ said Zifa.
United States of America based defender Teenage Hadebe is another player whose availability is in doubt as his Major Super League club Houston Dynamo have indicated that he is not coming to Zimbabwe because of the Covid-19 situation in the Southern African country.
Washington Arubi (Marumo Gallants) Talbert Shumba (Free State Stars) Martin Mapisa (Zamora CF)
Teenage Hadebe (Houston Dynamo) Brendan Galloway (Plymouth Argyle) Onismor Bhasera (SuperSport United) Jordan Zemura (AFC Bournemouth) Divine Lunga (Mamelodi Sundowns) Tendayi Darikwa (Wigan Athletic) Takudzwa Chimwemwe (Nkana) Jimmy Dzingai (Unattached) Alec Mudimu (Torpedo Kutaisi)
Blessing Sarupinda (Sekhukhune United) Jonah Fabisch (Hamburger SV) Marshall Munetsi (Stade de Reims) Marvelous Nakamba (Aston Villa) Tafadzwa Rusike, Thabani Kamusoko (Zesco United) Kudakwashe Mahachi (SuperSport United), Khama Billiat (Kaizer Chiefs) Perfect Chikwende (Simba SC) Butholezwe Ncube, (AmaZulu) Ovidy Karuru (Unattached)
Terrence Dzvukamanja (Orlando Pirates) Tinotenda Kadewere (Lyon) David Moyo(Hamilton Academical) Admiral Muskwe (Luton Town) Knowledge Musona (Al-Tai), Macauley Bonne (Ipswich Town)