Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Senior Sports Reporter
WARRIORS’ coach Callisto Pasuwa’s appalling tournaments record seems to continue unabated following the 0-2 loss to Africa’s top side Senegal in a Total African Nations Cup Group B match in Franceville, Gabon on Thursday night.
A goal apiece by Liverpool marksman Sadio Mane in the 10th minute and Saint-Étienne defender Henri Saivet’s 14th stunner from a set-piece condemned the Warriors to the defeat although young Dynamos shot-stopper Tatenda Mukuruva kept the scoreline respectable as the Lions of Teranga threatened to devour the Warriors.
Pasuwa has registered one victory in the eight matches Zimbabwe has played in three finals. That victory was against minnows Seychelles at the Cosafa 2016 finals in Namibia where the Warriors registered an emphatic 5-0 win.
“Anywhere else in the world such statistics are worrying and Pasuwa must pull up his socks. He seems to be a boy when it comes to the grand stage and that is unacceptable at this level. He also refuses advice from the Zifa appointed high performance committee,” said a coach who asked for anonymity.
Ironically Pasuwa was recommended to the post by the previous Zifa high performance committee which was led by John Phiri. “That bench is too thin and very inexperienced and if one refuses advice from guys like Sunday Chidzambwa, Rahman Gumbo, Innocent Chogugudza then we have a serious problem,” he said.
The Warriors take on psyched up Tunisia at 9PM on Monday, the same time Senegal comes up against Algeria. All the three teams — Zimbabwe, Algeria and Tunisia — are still in the running for a second spot finish and that might be determined by permutations that could see the drawing of lots, a first in the history of the tournament.
A win for Zimbabwe, by whatever scoreline will automatically eliminate Tunisia in terms of the qualification rules but if Algeria also beats Senegal, the matrix becomes trickier.
According to the criteria, if teams are tied on points, tiebreakers are applied in the following format, (i) number of points obtained in games between the teams concerned; (ii) goal difference in games between the teams concerned; (iii) goals scored in games between the teams concerned but if, after applying criteria 1 to 3 to teams concerned, two or three teams still have an equal ranking, criteria 1 to 3 are reapplied exclusively to the matches between these teams in question to determine their final rankings. If this procedure does not lead to a decision, criteria 5 to 7 will apply, which is goal difference in all games, goals scored in all games and finally drawing of lots.
Article Source: The Chronicle