HomeSportFootballZifa target ZITF to raise funds for Afcon qualifiers

Zifa target ZITF to raise funds for Afcon qualifiers

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ZIMBABWE Football Association (Zifa) is aiming to capitalise on this year’s Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) to raise funds for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers through the exhibition of products and targeting the corporate world for sponsorship.

Ronald Moyo
Sports Reporter

The national football mother body will be exhibiting products such as national team jerseys, magazines as well as persuading the corporate world to advertise with Zifa.

Zifa is in need of over $1 million to fund at least nine matches of the 2015 Afcon qualifiers. The draw will be conducted on April 27.

The first games of the qualifying stages will kick off in the first weekend of next month.

Zifa communications director Xolisani Gwesela yesterday told Southern Eye Sport that the football mother body spends at least $150 000 for each international match and the costs are too high hence the call for the government and corporate support in times of need.

“Football worldwide survives on corporate sponsorship, but for the past years we have seen it dwindling because of the Asiagate (match-fixing) scandal. We need to raise money for the Afcon qualifiers, but we do not have sponsors. People should not expect Zifa to have money because we spend at least $150 000 for international games, but we make less than $30 000 in gate takings,” Gwesela said.

Zifa will be hoping to lure the corporate world to advertise their products with the football body through perimeter banners, training kits, travelling kits and back-drop banners during matches.

Gwesela said Zifa was taking the opportunity to interact with those who have questions about it, accusing some sections of the media of tarnishing the image of the country’s football body.

“The reason why we are here is that we are the nation’s football mother body,” he said.

“We want to face the football fraternity and the corporate world because there are a lot of misconceptions about Zifa. We have been accused by some sections of the media of corporate misgovernance as they claim that we failed to produce financial statements.

“We want to make it clear that such reports are highly speculative in nature as we will produce financial statements from 2010 to 2013 in the extraordinary general meeting to be held next month where they are going to be ratified and presented to the public for scrutiny,” Gwesela said.

Zimbabwe have been struggling in continental competitions due to financial constraints, but defied odds putting a superb display reaching the of the African Championships tournament that was played in South Africa in January.

Since 2006 Zimbabwe have failed to make it to the Afcon, the latest disappointment being the team’s failure to secure a place to the 2013 competitions that were hosted by South Africa, losing on away goal rule to Angola.

In their only two appearances in the competition, the warriors have been knocked out in the group stages.

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