HARARE – National football team coach, Calisto Pasuwa and his entire technical team were last night sensationally relieved of their duties by the new Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) board headed by newly-elected president, Philip Chiyangwa.
Circumstances around the reasons they were fired ahead of the Warriors’ African Nations Championship (Chan) were not available at the time of going to press last night but the Daily News has been told that the new Zifa board does not want to be held to ransom over allowances.
An interim technical team to take charge of Chan and the 2017 African Cup of Nations campaign was immediately announced with Castle Lager Premier Soccer League championship-winning coach Joey Antipas being thrown into the hot seat as interim coach.
Wellington Mpandare was handed the task of team manager.
Omega Sibanda who is acting Zifa president Omega Sibanda in the absence of Chiyangwa (who is on leave) said the association arrived at the decision at a Zifa national committee extraordinary meeting yesterday.
“It was resolved that the entire technical team for the men’s national team headed by Mr Calisto Pasuwa be relieved of its duties,” Sibanda said.
“National team camp is hereby dissolved with immediate effect and new camp dates will be announced in due course.
Sibanda had earlier distributed a media statement threatening that the association would never allow players and coaches to hold the nation at ransom over allowances.
It seemed to be a jibe at Pasuwa who is owed a substantive amount of unpaid dues and who has consistently fought for players’ dues.
“The Zimbabwe Football Association would like to categorically state that national duty call up is a privilege which no patriotic Zimbabwean can turn down,” Sibanda said.
“The association will continue to extend invitations to players and coaches eligible to do duty for Zimbabwe. The PSL is endowed with highly-qualified technical personnel boasting of Caf licences and shall not be short of qualified technical expertise.
“The association is currently carrying out an audit of technical expertise in all association leagues with a view towards considering for placement those qualified to take up national team duties.
“The nation should rest assured that players and technical personnel who heed to the international duty call up shall be rewarded for their sacrifice and commitment,” read a terse statement signed by Sibanda.
Head Coach: Joey Antipas, Assistant Coach 1: Tonderai Ndiraya, Assistant Coach 2: Mandla Mpofu, Goalkeeper’s Coach: Peter Nkomo, Team Manager: Wellington Mpandare, Fitness Manager/Liason Officer: Cosmas Zulu, Team Doctor: Dr Togarepi, Physiotherapist Farai Muguwe