FORMER Warriors assistant coach Moses “Bambo” Chunga has bemoaned the absence of Zimbabwe in prestigious international tournaments and their exit from next year’s Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) after falling to Tanzania.
The Warriors were bundled out of the Afcon tournament after losing 2-3 on aggregate to the Taifa Stars.
After his Chiredzi FC lost 0-1 to Chicken Inn on Saturday in a Castle Lager Premier Soccer League match at Luveve Stadium, Chunga said it worried him that every time Zimbabweans had to rally behind other African countries in the World Cup.
“So who are you supporting in the World Cup? You will hear people saying Nigeria! But when are we going to be there ourselves. We have got everything in Zimbabwe and I think we have the resources, but I don’t know where we are failing. We don’t even need a foreign coach,” Chunga said.
In the only other two times that Zimbabwe have qualified (2004) and 2006, the Warriors were under the guidance of local coaches.
Sunday Chidzambwa became the first coach to take the Warriors to the finals in Tunisia before Charles Mhlauri finished off a campaign than had been started by Rahman Gumbo.
Chunga, who did not want to point fingers at anyone for the Warriors’ misfortunes, said the country’s football was being damaged by too much tribalism and regionalism, blaming the media for not playing its part in contributing immensely in closing the rift that has affected football in the country.
“When a national team coach is appointed from Bulawayo, he will not get the support from Harare and if he comes from Harare he will not get the support from this end (Bulawayo). Come soccer stars selection at the end of the year, you (the journalists) vote en bloc. Even the Warriors players after their games, you see them grouping on regional lines. It says something,” Chunga said.
Five African countries are in Brazil for the Fifa World Cup and two have already played first matches with the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon falling 0-1 to Mexico in Group A on Friday in the group where they will host Brazil, Croatia and Mexico.
Ivory Coast beat Japan 2-1 in Group C yesterday morning. They have Colombia and Greece in that group.
Nigeria will take on Iran tonight at 9pm in Group F where there is also Argentina and Bosnia and Herzegovina while in Group G Ghana clash with the US at midnight.
Ghana has Portugal and Germany in their group.
Algeria in Group H, will date Belgium tomorrow in the group where they have Korea Republic and Russia.
The Warriors, who never receive government assistance, were kicked out of the African 2014 World Cup qualifiers last year in June in Group G following the 0-2 loss to Guinea in Conakry when they travelled a day before the game owing to financial constraints.